An account of anxiety and consumption in the Bengali affluent middle class
AuthorSaadat, Syed Abu Sinjan
MetadataShow full item record
In this research, I attempt to unpack the concept of anxiety surrounding consumption of the Bangladeshi ‘middle class.’ My hypothesis is that class identities of this group are indistinguishably linked with their consumption. By tracing the historical formation of the metropolitan ‘middle class’ in Bangladesh and reviewing relevant literature, this paper aims to revise the market situation that the individuals of this group are embedded in. The objective of this ethnography was to create an account of urban anxieties that arise out of the metropolitan middle class consumption and this was done through structured and semi-structured interviews from members of this group. Existing literature suggests strongly that the ‘middle class’ should be understood as a unique historical formation- born out of the specific colonial past of the nation- and that shortcomings exist in homogenizing this particular class category. With these ideas in mind, the central research questions are: How can we identify the Bangladeshi middle class? What types of consumption are definitive of this class group? What is this urban anxiety? What could it represent? These questions will be addressed in this paper to illustrate the relationship between urban consumption and anxiety.