Many keep spending despite economic pressures

Consumerism as we have known it over the past 30 years has become the prime feature of capitalist culture. Consumption has proved to be a pleasurable activity. What is striking is that it also appeals to people who cannot afford it, even when times are tough financially. For instance, shopping centers are especially crowded on public holidays. People want to shop in spite of the pressure and the crowds that force them to hurry. This insistence under unfavorable conditions evidences an intense desire that has its basis in human instinct. It is a primitive state, in which individuals consume without awareness of their surroundings, anxious only to fulfill their desires. The feeling «I have to have what I want» indicates emotional immaturity, in which the individual is ruled by their desires, like a child. When adults too behave like this, it has a considerable impact on children. Some grow up more slowly as the childish side of their personality is reinforced, while others react as if they were the parents, feeling a need to protect their parents, sensing their immaturity. There are children who identify with their parents’ consumerism and others who respond with indifference. Dimitris Boukouras is a clinical psychologist and psychopathologist.