Consumption, Markets & Culture Special Issue: Taste – Deadline: November 15, 2018

Guest editors: Anissa Pomiès (emlyon business school), Zeynep Arsel (Concordia University), and Jonathan Bean (University of Arizona)

Taste is a cross-disciplinary research object spanning diverse empirical contexts including food, visual arts, wine, music, fashion, literature, and decoration. While dramatic theoretical shifts punctuate the history of the concept of taste (Pomiès and Arsel, forthcoming), we call for renewing our theorizations to better highlight current empirical phenomena. For example at the micro-level, researchers are continuously confronted with omnivorousness (Warde, Wright, Gayo-Cal, 2007), inter-individual variations of cultural practices within a social class (Lahire, 2003, 2008) and reflexive performances that resist and challenge existing hegemonies (Sandikci and Ger, 2010; Kjeldgaard et al., 2016; Thompson, forthcoming). At the market level, aestheticized niches have recently emerged for former commodities such as coffee, beer, and olive oil (Maciel and Wallendorf, 2017; Pomiès, 2015). At the macro-level, global cultural flows have contributed to the reterritorialization of market elements such as rock music (Yazicioǧlu, 2010) and to the formation of hybrid cultural products that are both global and local (Thompson and Arsel, 2004; Kjeldgaard and Östberg, 2007). Furthermore, transformations in mediascapes challenge traditional models of tastemaking (Dolbec and Fischer, 2015; McQuarrie, Miller, and Philipps, 2013; Wilson-Barnao, 2017). These and other contemporary empirical phenomena are promising sites for research that challenge existing theories of taste, inviting researchers to investigate the influence of taste on market systems, processes of glocalization, and agentic, reflexive and transformative taste performances.
This special issue focuses on the ways taste is performed, deformed, and transformed by human and non-human actors including consumers (e.g., Arsel and Bean, 2013; Arvidsson and Niessen, 2014), producers (e.g., Delsaut and Bourdieu, 1974; Rinallo and Golfetto, 2006), cultural intermediaries (e.g., Bessy and Chauvin, 2013), political authorities (e.g., Karababa and Ger, 2010), experts (e.g., Chauvin, 2010; McCoy, 2014), material devices (Denegri-Knott, 2015, Hennion, 2004), situations (Hennion, 2001), and technologies (e.g., Airoldi, Beraldo and Gandini, 2016; Holak, 2014). The aim is to rethink the understanding of taste by critically revisiting classical theories, by applying theories rarely used to understand taste in consumer research, and by shedding light on emergent theories grounded in nascent empirical phenomena.
We call for theoretical and empirical articles that renew our understanding of taste as well as methodological pieces addressing the epistemological challenges that have arisen as a result of the changing cultural landscape. In the spirit of Consumption, Markets & Culture, we invite interdisciplinary contributions, particularly those connecting the market studies literature and culturally-oriented work on taste. We are open to theoretical perspectives, rich empirical investigations, and critical work.

Below is an illustrative and non-exhaustive list of suggested topics:

– Transformation of taste practices in the marketplace and over the life-course
– Life transitions and how they shape tastes
– The active role played by objects and mediations on taste practices
– Rebellion against existing norms and hierarchies of taste
– Omnivorousness
– The temporal dimension of cultural products
– The social construction of cultural products
– Glocalization and taste
– Unstable taste preferences over time
– Surveillance and new technological order and quantification of taste
– Reputation in cultural fields
– The shaping of taste by social media influencers
– Algorithms and recommendation systems in cultural fields
– Bad taste
– Emotions and sensemaking
– Moralization and politicization of taste
– The co-constitutive relationship between taste and platform/gig economies

Submissions will be evaluated on the following criteria: ability to advance our understanding of taste, rigorous exposition and development of concepts and theories, originality, alignment between research methods and goals, quality of data, and contribution to existing literature.

Submissions should not exceed 45 pages (including references, tables and appendix). When formatting your article, please follow the Consumption, Markets & Culture style guide available on the journal web site. Please send submissions to Submissions will be blind peer reviewed and jointly assessed by the three guest editors.


Timeline for submissions:
September 15, 2018: Initial submission opens
November 15, 2018: Submission deadline
Jan 15, 2019: First round decisions are made
June 15, 2019: Revised papers submitted
September 15, 2019: Second round decisions are made
Dec 15, 2019: Final revisions submitted

Reading suggestions
Airoldi, Massimo, Davide Beraldo, and Alessandro Gandini. « Follow the algorithm: An exploratory investigation of music on YouTube. » Poetics. 57 (2016): 1-13.

Arsel, Zeynep, and Jonathan Bean. 2013. “Taste Regimes and Market-Mediated Practice.” Journal of Consumer Research. 39 (5): 899–917.

Arvidsson, Adam and Niessen Bertram. 2015. Creative Mas. Consumption, Creativity, and Innovation on Bangkok’s fashion markets. Consumption, Markets & Culture. 18(2). 111-132.

Bean, Jonathan (Forthcoming). Put a bird on it. Taste, Consumption and Markets. Oxford: Routledge.

Bessy, Christian and Pierre-Marie Chauvin. 2013. “The Power of Market Intermediaries: from Information to Valuation Processes”. Valuation Studies. 1(1). 83-117.

Bourdieu, Pierre (1984), Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste, Cambridge Mass: Harvard University Press.

Denegri-Knott, Janice. 2015. MP3. Consumption, Markets & Culture. 18(5). 397-401.

Emonstpool, Julie and Georgi Carina. 2017. A cosmopolitan return to nature. How combining aesthetization and moralization processes expresses distinction in food consumption. Consumption, Markets & Culture. 20(4), 306-328.

Heinich, Nathalie. 1997. The glory of Van Gogh: An anthropology of admiration. Princeton University Press.

Hennion, Antoine. 2004. “Pragmatics of Taste.” In The Blackwell Companion to the Sociology of Culture, edited by Mark Jacobs and Nancy Hanrahan, 131–44. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.

Hennion, Antoine. 2007. “Those Things That Hold Us Together: Taste and Sociology.” Cultural Sociology 1 (1): 97–114.

Holak, Susan. 2014. “From Brighton beach to blogs: exploring food-related nostalgia in the Russian diaspora. Consumption, Markets & Culture. 17(2). 185-207.

Janssen, Susanne, Giselinde Kuipers, and Marc Verboord. 2008. « Cultural globalization and arts journalism: The international orientation of arts and culture coverage in Dutch, French, German, and US newspapers, 1955 to 2005. » American sociological review 73(5): 719-740.

Janssen, Susanne. 1998. « Side-roads to success: The effect of sideline activities on the status of writers. » Poetics. 25(5): 265-280.

Kjeldgaard, Dannie, et al. 2017. « Consumers’ collective action in market system dynamics: A case of beer. » Marketing Theory. 17(1): 51-70.

Kuipers, Giselinde. 2015. Good humor, bad taste: A sociology of the joke. Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG.

Lahire, Bernard. 2003. “From the Habitus to an Individual Heritage of Dispositions. Towards a Sociology at the Level of the Individual.” Poetics 31 (5): 329–55.

Lahire, Bernard. 2008. “The Individual and the Mixing of Genres: Cultural Dissonance and Self-Distinction.” Poetics, Models of Omnivorous Cultural Consumption: New Directions in Research, 36 (2): 166–88.

Maciel, Andre F., and Melanie Wallendorf. 2017. “Taste Engineering: An Extended Consumer Model of Cultural Competence Constitution.” Journal of Consumer Research 43 (5): 726–46.

Pomiès, Anissa, and Zeynep Arsel (forthcoming). Retracing the History of the concept of taste. Taste, Consumption and Markets. Oxford: Routledge.

Sandikci, Özlem, and Güliz Ger. 2009. « Veiling in style: How does a stigmatized practice become fashionable?. » Journal of Consumer Research 37(1): 15-36.

Sapiro, Gisèle. 2010. »Globalization and cultural diversity in the book market: The case of literary translations in the US and in France. » Poetics 38(4): 419-439.

Teil, Geneviève, and Antoine Hennion. 2004. “Discovering Quality or Performing Taste? A Sociology of the Amateur.” In Qualities of Food, edited by Mark Harvey, Andrew McMeekin, and Alan Warde, 19–37. Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Thompson, Craig J., and Zeynep Arsel. 2004. « The Starbucks brandscape and consumers'(anticorporate) experiences of glocalization. » Journal of consumer research 31(3): 631-642.

Warde, Alan, David Wright, and Modesto Gayo-Cal. 2007. « Understanding cultural omnivorousness: Or, the myth of the cultural omnivore. » Cultural sociology 1(2): 143-164.

Wilson-Barnao, Caroline. 2017. How algorithmic cultural recommendation influence the marketing of cultural collections. Consumption, Markets & Culture. 20(6). 559-574.

Taçlı Yazıcıoğlu, E. 2010. Contesting the global consumption ethos: Reterritorialization of rock in Turkey. Journal of macromarketing, 30(3), 238-253.


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