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Christmas markets - marketplace icon
journal contributionposted on 03.11.2020, 13:46 by Aurelie Broeckerhoff, Cristina Galalae
Christmas markets, originating in Germany in the Middle Ages, have transformed from small-scale, local consumption spaces into a global icon for Christmas consumption behaviours. What has facilitated this rise to a global cultural commodity for experiential consumption? Tracing the history of Christmas markets, we highlight two characteristics that have facilitated their iconicity: openness across historical and cultural contexts and an ability to incorporate a variety of complex meanings that have, at different points, “masked” or enhanced their commercial nature. We argue that the maintenance of Christmas markets as marketplace icons will rely on their ability to continue to adapt to the consumption zeitgeist of the multiple environments where they operate.