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malls essay!!!!!!!!!

malls essay!!!!!!!!! - Mona Mustafa Professor Bowman...

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Mona Mustafa Professor Bowman English 103/ Fall 2007 11/15/07 Word count: 1200 The Garden of Green: Malls and the Motive of Profit The modern mall, like a formal garden or a religious center, presents a packaged view of American culture and what it values. As historian James Farrell suggests, in his article “Shopping for American Culture,” “… malls are a manifestation of popular philosophy. They’re a place where we answer important questions…. Like churches, [malls] are places where we decide what is ultimately valuable and how we value it” (434). In contemporary culture one predominant value is gratification. For many the fulfillment of gratification is something that the mall can easily accommodate. With the many visually appealing features and experiences it provides, like its lavish fountains, its bright lighting, the soothing sounds of music, and the appealing scents of different foods and indoor plants, a trip to the mall can be as therapeutic as a garden of free delight. The modern mall experience can also be as rejuvenating and salutary as a pious person’s visit to his religious center. With all of their pleasing images, products, and features, malls advertise themselves using words and ideas associated with religion and spiritual ideals. With these words malls work to attract the American consumer dominant society and transform them into disoriented spenders and targets of the profit motive. As many historians and professors, such as James Ferrell, Jon Pahl, and Richard Keller Simon, suggest, the mall uses aspects of religion such as inspirational language, accessibility, storytelling and a sense of community to attract American consumers and make them more amenable to the profit motive.
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One religious aspect that can be found in the mall is the use of inspirational language and messages that one would otherwise find in a spiritual setting. For instance,
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