The quest for authenticity in consumption: consumers’ purposive choice of authentic cues to shape experienced outcomes

Michael B. Beverland, Francis J. Farrelly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

297 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Drawing from image‐elicited depth interviews, we investigate whether consumers pursue the consumption of authentic objects with specific personal goals in mind. We find that consumers are motivated to focus on those particular cues in objects that for them convey authenticity (what is genuine, real, and/or true) and that this decision‐making process is driven by a desire to draw different identity benefits (control, connection, virtue) from authentic objects. Our interpretive analysis elaborates contributions to theorizing related to consumer agency in seeking authentic consumption experience. We provide cultural explanations for the desire to assert the authentic self in these particular ways.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)838-856
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Consumer Research
Volume36
Issue number5
Early online date19 Aug 2009
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010

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