Convergence of cultural consumption practices : the case of two gated housing residences in İstanbul
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People and cities have been confronted by an unprecedented scale of global changes over the past couple of decades. in accordance with the new mechanisms of rising worldwide trends which are grounded on the commercial economy of consumption istanbul has also undergone an urban transformation concurrently with its counterparts. in a sense world culture industry has transformed the city into a consumption catalogue that relies on a taken-for-granted context for everyday life deriving from institutionalized discourses of world culture. Following Boli and Lechner (2008) i take world culture as an organizational form of consumption that underlies a shared frame of reference regarding everyday experiences of urban living. Based on a short-term ethnographic research undertaken in two different priced gated housing settlements in istanbul my argument in this thesis is two-fold. First people in istanbul from different socio-economic groups have increasingly been used experience and live their everyday routines in a more familiar and predictable framework that is saturated by standardized experiences of the urban life. i argue that there is an ongoing level of convergence in life style practices and cultural consumption preferences of people who are differentiated symbolically based on spatial choices of housing. Second i argue that living in a gated housing settlement does not necessarily promote an isolated life style for its residents because the global infrastructure of cities provides an ever-increasing range of more readily available consumption experiences and wider realm of everyday leisure to a larger section of society. Therefore i suggest to understand the residents of gated housing settlements as individuals with extensive social interaction with the city through using the wide range of consumption representations of world culture industry. Using the analysis of the semi-structured interviews conducted with respondents from two gated housing residences this thesis aims to provide an alternative perspective concerning how world culture industry city and the urban life constitutes a converged setting in cultural consumption practices of the individuals who have significantly different spatial choices for housing.