PurposeThis paper aims to examine the notion of escape, which is central to the consumer experience literature, yet remains largely undertheorized. By surfacing the multi-dimensionality of escape, the authors develop a more fine-grained conceptualization of this notion. In addition, this work helps shed new light on past consumer research findings that mobilize the notion of escape.Design/methodology/approachThe paper is based on a review and interpretation of literature referring to the notion of escape in consumer research.FindingsThis paper’s first contribution is to extend the concept of escape based on the Turnerian framework of structure/anti-structure, by establishing a key difference between objects to “escape from” and the major themes of “escape into”. A second contribution is to identify other forms of escape that are mundane, restorative and warlike, and that mobilize the self in different ways.Practical implicationsThe paper provides a more precise conceptualization of escape to motivate further research on this particularly important concept for understanding consumer experience.Social implicationsEscape from one’s own self has become an important feature of contemporary life. Consumer experiences may be ways of crafting identities, but they also form the means of escaping the pressures that come with the burdens of identity.Originality/valueThis paper goes beyond past research on escape by identifying other types of escapes, which have not really been theorized in consumer research. The authors especially note the importance of ephemeral moments where people temporarily suspend their reflexive self, which the authors conceive as a new type of escape route.
Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 10, 2018
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