Delirious Consumption: Aesthetics and Consumer Capitalism in Mexico and Brazil (Border Hispanisms) (Paperback)
In the decades following World War II, the creation and expansion of massive domestic markets and relatively stable economies allowed for mass consumption on an unprecedented scale, giving rise to the consumer society that exists today. Many avant-garde artists explored the nexus between consumption and aesthetics, questioning how consumerism affects how we perceive the world, place ourselves in it, and make sense of it via perception and emotion.
Delirious Consumption focuses on the two largest cultural economies in Latin America, Mexico and Brazil, and analyzes how their artists and writers both embraced and resisted the spirit of development and progress that defines the consumer moment in late capitalism. Sergio Delgado Moya looks specifically at the work of David Alfaro Siqueiros, the Brazilian concrete poets, Octavio Paz, and Lygia Clark to determine how each of them arrived at forms of aesthetic production balanced between high modernism and consumer culture. He finds in their works a provocative positioning vis-à-vis urban commodity capitalism, an ambivalent position that takes an assured but flexible stance against commodification, alienation, and the politics of domination and inequality that defines market economies. In Delgado Moya’s view, these poets and artists appeal to uselessness, nonutility, and noncommunication—all markers of the aesthetic—while drawing on the terms proper to a world of consumption and consumer culture.
A well-researched and beautifully written book…Scholars in the Latin American, Mexican, and Brazilian studies fields have in Delgado Moya's text a possible model and a generative source for future research.
— European Review of Latin American and Caribbean Studies
An innovative narrative…Delirious Consumption is a fascinating book. It explores aspects of 'capitalism resistance' that had not been extensively explored before.
A brief but diverse and transversal mapping of artworks that allows researchers to gain a better understanding of the aesthetic dimensions of consumer capitalism, as well as its forms of representation.
— Latin American Cultural Studies
Attractive…Delgado Moya's book…renews the energies of visual and literary materials that continue to arouse our attention.
— Latin American Literary Review
Delirious Consumption offers intriguing case studies with the potential to reshape scholarly conversations on key artists and writers from both national traditions. The book will be of keen interest to scholars and students of twentieth-century Mexico and Brazil and of avant-garde and modernist movements more broadly.
— Revista de Estudios Hispánicos