Daniel Wharton


"Caroling Commercialism" focuses on the tiny topic of Christmas music and uses this as a lens through which the author examines the growing commodification of the Christmas holiday. At the surface, the expanding season during which radio stations play holiday music seems more like an annoyance than a problem. But the practice is actually a harbinger of a more dastardly intention. In short, there is economic incentive for retailers to pay more money for advertising during the holiday season. Because Christmas music puts consumers in the holiday spirit, stations are more likely to comingle holiday advertising with holiday music. And Christmas as a holiday is becoming more entangled with Christmas as a shopping season, which has a significant effect on the audience of "Christmas" as well as the holiday's impact for true believers of the Christian faith. While it is true that Christmas is not the only holiday that is becoming increasingly commercial (Valentine's Day, anyone?), it may be true that this trend as a whole is becoming more and more true of American society. There is a rising debt crisis in America, and many consumers already spend more than they can really afford. If there is a purpose to this article, it is to help people think about becoming conscious consumers and to limit their holiday spending to what is within their budgets. Isn't it hard to believe that all of this came out of hearing "Jingle Bell Rock" one too many times??

About the Author(s)

Dan Wharton is currently finishing his undergraduate career at The Ohio State University with degrees in Political Science and Economics. Born in Rocky River, Ohio, he currently resides in Columbus. He is looking forward to a future career in International Trade Law but for some reason enjoys the analysis of rhetoric in his spare time.



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