Professor John Hall
Journal of Economic Literature Classification Codes
B15, B31, B52
Conspicuous Consumption, Instinct of Emulation, Leisure Class, Non-fungible Tokens, Veblen Goods
This inquiry seeks to establish that ideas advanced by Thorstein Veblen in his book, The Theory of the Leisure Class , offer insights into nonfungible tokens. Through the evolution of technology -- aided by broad access to the internet -- the emergence of non-fungible tokens can be understood to offer the leisure class a novel form of conspicuous consumption. Enabled by expansive networks, members of the leisure class can now engage in conspicuous displays of wealth and therewith establish their status relative to members of the laboring class as well as members of the leisure class. While there exist many different forms of non-fungible tokens, this inquiry places special emphasis upon “Cryptopunks” and “Bored Ape Yacht Club” as two major projects.
© 2022 Kamren Geist
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Geist, Kamren. "Towards a Veblenian View of Non-Fungible Tokens, Working Paper No. 56", Portland State University Economics Working Papers. 56. (17 March 2022) i + 17 pages.