What products we choose to use can be a a form of public discourse. What a person wears, what food and drinks they purchase, and their choice of car can publically show what they find important in their lives. For example, a person wearing TOMS shoes might show that the wearer chose a shoe company that gives back to the world. However, companies also use public discourse to promote their products and make consumers feel good about buying their products, and they ultimately choose what image their consumer projects.
In this white board video (by the same group that produced the education video we watched in class) philosopher Slavoj Zizek discusses cultural consumerism and how companies like Starbucks and TOMS use public discourse to convince customers that consumerism can help the environment and other causes. I know it's a long video, but I really suggest watching it, it's quite fascinating.
So what do you think? Do you agree with Zizek's view of "cultural consumerism," or are Starbuck's and TOMS really helping the world?