From Global Cultural References to Global Imaginaries

  • Vincenzo Cicchelli
  • Sylvie Octobre
Part of the Consumption and Public Life book series (CUCO)


The omnipresence of the products of global cultural industries and iconic monuments and artworks produces, maintains, and renews an impression of familiarity with images of elsewhere. We distinguish the “background” imaginaries that are automatically constituted through the accumulated consumption of cultural products from the self-reflexive process involved in the construction of an individual imaginary, a process that is simultaneously conscious and subconscious, and which expresses diverse experiences as interests or disinterests that transcend the initial emotions linked to their consumption. This chapter shows how in a globalized cultural and aesthetic context, imaginaries play an important role in helping individuals to define their identity and world view. Aesthetico-cultural imaginaries are the most influential, notably because they echo widespread consumption patterns, as shown in the previous chapter. These imaginaries help individuals to understand the world and recontextualize national diversity at the global level.


  1. Appadurai, Arjun. 1996. Modernity at Large. Cultural Dimensions of Globalization. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  2. Cicchelli, Vincenzo. 2012. L’esprit cosmopolite. Voyages de formation des jeunes en Europe. Paris: Presses de Sciences Po.Google Scholar
  3. Cicchelli, Vincenzo, and Pendenza, Massimo. 2015. The Looming Shadows of the Walls. Is a Cosmopolitan Europe still Possible? (In Special Issue: Cosmopolitanism and Europe, eds. Vincenzo Cicchelli and Massimo Pendenza) Partecipazione e Conflitto 8 (3): 625–642.Google Scholar
  4. Cotesta, Vittorio. 2012. Global Society and Human Rights. Leiden: Brill.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Coulmas, Peter. 1995. Citoyens du monde. Une histoire du cosmopolitisme. Paris: Albin Michel.Google Scholar
  6. Fabre, Cécile. 2012. Cosmopolitan War. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fine, Robert. 2007. Cosmopolitanism. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  8. Germann Molz, Jennie. 2007. Eating Difference. The Cosmopolitan Mobilities of Culinary Tourism. Space and Culture 10 (1): 77–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Lechner, Frank J., and John Boli. 2005. World Culture. Origins and Consequences. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  10. Oz, Amos. 2004. A Tale of Love and Darkness. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vincenzo Cicchelli
    • 1
  • Sylvie Octobre
    • 1
  1. 1.GEMASSCNRS/University of Paris-SorbonneParisFrance

Personalised recommendations