Advertising and commodity fetishism: Praxis in a peripheral theatre of consumption. A study of advertising in Nigeria.
thesisposted on 19.11.2015, 08:56 by Ayotunde Akinwale. Oyeleye
This is a study of the advertising institution in Nigeria aimed to providing insights on the workings of foreign institutions introduced into traditional, pre-capitalist societies through the course of imperialism, in the general process of international capitalist expansion. This study then, represents a specific instance in what is essentially a diverse and complex process of assimilation into a world capitalist economy. In choosing advertising as a suitable medium for the analysis of such a process this study recognises the centrality of the advertising institution in advanced market economies; its increasing operations in developing countries; and the recognition of its role for the sustenance of the constituent consumer culture. The central contention in this work thus, is that modern product consumer advertising represents one of the most useful institution through which we can observe important social changes taking place in society. For Peripheral market economies like Nigeria, with a history of Imperial domination, advertising communication is a useful medium through which the process of cultural assimilation into the twentieth century consumer culture can be observed. In view of this recognition, this study follows the recent approach (in the study of advertising), to place the study on the twin pillars of history and culture in order first, to understand the dynamics of the wider dimensions within which society as a whole, and cultural practice in particular, operate; and secondly, to understand how the nature of these wider dimensions impact upon the workings of society and culture. This study then, involving analyses of Nigerian advertisements as a cultural form and, examination of the wider political economy of the Nigerian society, reveals evidence of social-cultural changes in the traditional patterns of social relations; how these have come about, largely as a result of Nigeria's historical link with international capitalist expansion; the role of local protagonists; and the ways that the nature of a peripheral market economy (including the role of local actors), forster cultural homogenisation particularly through the neglect of culture in National policy orientation, finance and administration.