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The University of Southampton
Winchester Luxury Research Group


Luxury: History, Culture, Consumption

Cover of Luxury journal

Luxury: History, Culture, Consumption, published by Taylor & Francis is the first truly interdisciplinary, academic journal devoted to luxury, and satisfies the demand for scholarly, unbiased and penetrating thinking on the subject. The journal considers luxury in broad socio-cultural contexts, exploring and interrogating both our historical and contemporary understanding of the term.

Within the context of the contemporary global economic recession, our consumption of luxury is being questioned and indeed transformed, with notions of ‘affordable luxury', ‘sustainable luxury' and even ‘luxury for less' suggesting a new discourse.  At the same time, the demand for luxury goods and services on a global scale is at an unprecedented level.  Luxury examines all aspects of the subject: its historical formation and understanding, its contemporary global political and economic function, alongside an exploration of how the concept of luxury remains an impetus for design, popular culture, literature and fine art. 

 The journal publishes peer-reviewed papers by leading academics and commentators from a variety of disciplines providing an account of luxury that includes the historical, international, political and economic, alongside those directly concerned with the contemporary luxury industry. Each issue demonstrates the breadth and interpretation of the term that its contemporary status demands and the contestation of luxury in the form of socio-political critique generates challenging academic debate, establishing the journal as the leading forum for those interested in the field.

Luxury is a wonderful topic which crosses so many disciplines and fields in the humanities, arts and social sciences. A new journal on luxury is a significant initiative from the editorial group and publisher - a step forward I very much applaud.

The advent of any new scholarly journal is cause for excitement, but in this case the potential is unusually great. The history and present state of luxury, as both a story of production and a consumer experience, is a fascinating and contentious subject, and little examined by those outside the industry itself. As a site of scholarly discourse, the journal will bring into being a truly innovative field of study.

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