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Religion and the Marketplace in the United States$
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Jan Stievermann, Philip Goff, and Detlef Junker

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199361793

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199361793.001.0001

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Selling Infinite Selves

Selling Infinite Selves

Youth Culture and Contemporary Festivals

(p.191) 8 Selling Infinite Selves
Religion and the Marketplace in the United States

Sarah M. Pike

Oxford University Press

This chapter demonstrates that festival attendees at Coachella, Earthdance, Burning Man, and other such youth festivals experience spirituality as they at once resist the market economy and accommodate to it. Spiritual identity is produced in the struggle with and against individuals’ consumer identity, an attempt to escape the economic practices of capitalism and also to adapt them. The spirituality of these festivals is not experienced as a separate sphere from economic transactions, then, the chapter argues, but, rather, as something antagonistically related to and also dependent on markets. The economic and the spiritual are critically interlocked.

Keywords:   Coachella, Burning Man, spirituality, capitalism, youth festivals

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