Essay #3: Consumerism: Beyond the need and into the greed?
Background: News about climate change and garbage piling up on land and getting dumped in the ocean is now common. Though we are familiar with images of used plastic – plastic floating in the ocean, plastic washing up on shore, plastic getting piled up higher and higher, we “turn a blind eye to the problem [we] know [we] are causing” (Aravind, 2013). Have our “use and throw” ways gone beyond simple excess and crossed the line of ethical behavior?
Essay Question: Is the way we shop and buy in our consumerist societies unethical?
(OPTION: Your essay may also discuss the roots of this behavior and/or possible solutions.)
Take-Home Essay Requirements:
• Focus your essay on a thesis that clearly states the topic of the essay and your opinion.
• Support your thesis with specific and relevant evidence from at least three of the assigned readings. You may not use outside sources. WIKIPEDIA is not allowed as a source for this essay or any essay in this course.
• Your introduction should provide a context (background) for the essay and lead to your thesis. Your conclusion should give the essay a sense of completion.
• Demonstrate clear paragraph focus and effective organization in your essay.
• Integrate ideas from the assigned resources. You may use 2-3 brief quotes. Other information you use from the text should be paraphrased, written in your own words.
• All references to your reading material need to be cited in APA. Generally speaking, the more a writer is able to integrate the ideas of other writers the better the essay will be. You should include a “references” page.
• Final draft: approximately 3-4 pages typed, 12 pt font, double-spaced w/ one-inch margins.
• Give your essay a title!
“Consumerism” by Anjana Aravind
“Dumpster Diving” by Lars Eighner
“In Defence of Consumerism” by Ryan Bourne
“Lessons from Lost Worlds” by Jared Diamond
“Talking Trash” by Andy Rooney
“The Powerful Theory of Conspicuous Consumption”