Handbook on the Economics of Leisure
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Handbook on the Economics of Leisure

Edited by Samuel Cameron

Surprisingly, the field of leisure economics is not, thus far, a particularly integrated or coherent one. In this Handbook a wide ranging body of international scholars get to grips with the core issues, taking in the traditional income/leisure choice model of textbook microeconomics and Becker’s allocation of time model along the way. They expertly apply economics to some usually neglected topics, such as boredom and sleeping, work–life balance, dating, tourism, health and fitness, sport, video games, social networking, music festivals and sex. Contributions from further afield by Veblen, Sctivosky and Bourdieu also feature prominently.
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Chapter 12: Leisure Tribe-onomics

Darragh O’Reilly


Daragh O’Reilly INTRODUCTION Since the 1990s, there has been a considerable growth in the body of theory which deals with collective consumption or consumer groups. A wide repertoire of terms now exists with which to talk about consumer ‘groupness’, including user group, brand culture, tribe, neo-tribe, brand tribe, user community, brand community, cult, scene, microculture, subculture and so on. Examples of these groups include many which are linked to leisure activities, for example, musical subcultures such as Goths, punks and metalheads; skydivers; bikers; gay and lesbian subcultures; skateboarders; fantasy and science fiction fans; and yuppies. For those seeking conceptual clarity in this field, the proliferation of academic constructs does not help matters. However, all of these groups have certain issues in common, for example, their boundaries with the outside, membership criteria and assessment, group composition, intra-group hierarchies, group values, group identity, the tension and/or fit between group and individual identities, spirituality/religiosity and heritage. From a leisure economics point of view, the question must be: what are the economic implications of this ‘groupness’? There has been little attention paid within the leisure studies journal literature to notions of collective consumption, and practically none given to notions such as ‘brand communities’ and ‘consumer tribes’ which have proven to be very popular within marketing and consumer studies. The social grouping and behaviour of consumers during their leisure activities have a clear economic impact, particularly when these are linked with celebrity and fandom. The aims of this chapter are to bring some of the...

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