Faculty of Business and Public Management
School of Marketing, Tourism and Leisure
Most studies of consumer behaviour have focused on the decision-making processes involved in the purchasing of goods and services. A change towards a more macro orientation is currently occurring in the field of Consumer Behaviour, a change that is enabling researchers to obtain a greater understanding of both the cognitions and emotions involved in the entire consumption process. Part of this process is the analysis of the symbolic meanings of products, particularly the relationship between product meanings and consumers’ sense of self. Examining alcohol consumption in the Australian context, this chapter explores the relevance of symbolic consumption and discusses the implications for current conceptualisations of the process of selfconstruction as achieved through consumption.