Rationalization of Pleasure and Emotions: The Analysis of the Blogs of Polish Minimalists
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The Maria Grzegorzewska University
Publication date: 2016-12-28
Polish Sociological Review 2016;196(4):495–412
In this paper, we focus on consumption practices reflected on blogs of Polish minimalists. We analyzed 16 top blogs of the minimalists present in the Polish blogosphere. The objective of the minimalists is to consume less and live simple life without the excess of material objects. We studied the instructions of everyday conduct which the minimalists give on their blogs, as well as the meanings they assign to their practices: their personal stories of becoming a minimalist and statements of their values. The authors belong to one generation—their childhood took place in the times of the shortage economy in the 1980s. This influenced the whole trajectory of their lives and their consumer choices. To interpret their practices we use the categories of rationalization of Max Weber and modern hedonism of Colin Campbell. It appears that minimalists strive for reaching certain emotional states, e.g. peace and wellbeing they imagine, in line with the theory of modern hedonism. A path to those emotional states consists of rationalization of all the temporary, impulse-based pleasures and control over emotions involved in consumption.