It is a mind blowing concept that, over the time humans have existed, they have created so many “things”, and allowed these “things” to define them. While that is an incredibly broad statement, because the word “thing” could mean a variety of materials, it provides room for vast interpretation. Specifically, I want to talk about what is on the surface, or what people use to define their own personal existence. “Things” such as technologies, brand clothing, makeup, jewelry. I am limiting this to modern materialism, but it is important to recognize that themes of materialism have been patterned throughout human existence; they are just more recognizable in this fashion, since I conveniently exist in this time period. The significance I want to point out regarding materialism is not the simple fact that people acquire “things” but that these items distort how the surrounding world views these individuals. Simply put, walking down the street I could make assumptions (emphasis on assumptions) about an individual’s life (interests, family life, economic status, education level etc.) just by observing how they physically present themselves. Conversely, if it was a social norm for people to be naked everywhere, all the time, it would not be as easy for me to infer characteristics about an individual. Materialism is increasingly defining individuals, not necessarily negatively, but nonetheless construing perceptions.

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