Feel the Power of the Commodity Self

"Our consciousness of ourselves is largely a reflection of the consciousness which others have of us... my idea of myself is rather my own idea of my neighbor's view of me." - Floyd Allport

This quote exemplifies the social foundation on which the commodity self is based. Ewen speaks of the commodity self as the advertising correlative to the social self defined by Allport. The commodity self offers a conceptualization where "each portion of the body was to be viewed critically, as a potential bauble in a successful assemblage" of self (Ewen, 47).

This Ultress Clairol advertisement is an acute representation of the way that the commodity self is exemplified. The images portray a multiple self, acquired by the use of a hair product. Depicted here, the commodity self can have a multiplicity of faces. The implication of the ad is that the commodity named Ultress from Clairol permits you to explore and express the full range of your persona. An additional trait of the commodity self displayed here is the arrogance of knowledge and consumer identification The true commodity self always knows more than the viewer does, though it must still leave sufficient commonality between the model and the viewer so as to permit you to invest your commodity self in theirs. While the Rogaine ad addresses the fear that I may not be fully accepted as a social self minus a full set of hair, the Clairol ad speaks to the additional element of a self that possesses a full range of emotions.

The Roots of the Commodity Self

Freedom & the Commodity Self - 1

Freedom & the Commodity Self - 2