Integrating Belk's (1988) notion of the "extended self" with van Gennep's (1960) framework of "liminal transitions," a model of symbolic consumption activities and psychological phenomena that occur during major life transitions is developed. In an initial investigation, the transition from high school to college is used to explore the nature of the liminal experience, the role that symbolic consumption assumes in the process, and the effects of both on consumers' psychological states. The results suggest that certain negative psychological consequences are indicative of existence in a liminal state. Further, consumers in transition appear to rely on possessions that symbolize the past, as well as those that represent the new role, to help facilitate a major life transition. Directions for future research are offered.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||19|
|Journal||Psychology and Marketing|
|State||Published - Jan 1997|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Psychology