Dictionary.com defines commodity as "something useful that can be turned to commercial or other advantage," for example, any item made to make life a little easier, socially or otherwise, such as a new sweater, or a cell phone. The site also describes fetishism as an "excessive attachment or regard" or "the displacement of sexual arousal or gratification to a fetish." We can delve into the bonds between a Ericson phone and the consumer reaching out to grab that fancy packaging or we can take a different direction and determine where the connection is within the Tommy Hilfiger Brand perfume and the sexual gratification of that product's customer.
It is odd to interpret the latter sexual definition of fetishism and see how psychologically fit it can be, regarding the relationship between items at the mall and its consumers. It is obvious however that Anne Norton is referencing the first definition of fetishism regarding the attachment amidst purchaser and item; her essay almost completely discussing different ways to buy clothes.
In "What's in a Package," Thomas Hine refers to packaging as being the "final payoff to a marketing campaign" and says that it gives a "powerful image to products and commodities that are in themselves characterless." (Hine 71) In this sense we attain that the packaging and brand recognition is what defines us, what identifies us, what makes us an 'individual' and groups us at the same time.
Anne Norton notes that every display we see bestows its own design, giving the product a subconscious story at every consumer's glance. She gives a Polo display as an example, bringing everything from horses to Indian blankets into its meaning. Looking at a shoe display promoting the latest Nike high top sneaker we are instilled with visions of being the...