AuthorCrockett, David Kevin
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe purpose of this dissertation is twofold. First, it is to enhance conceptual clarity in the consumer behavior literature on consumer disadvantage by investigating the role of racial inequality in consumer experiences in markets for basic needs products. That is, this research analyzes how consumer disadvantage is experienced in markets for food and health care in order to illustrate the operation of racial inequality situated in a context where class and gender inequality also operate simultaneously. A second purpose of this project is to construct and assess a grounded typology of consumer responses to disadvantage in such settings. The emergent findings in this study are that racial inequality primarily structures the operation of disadvantage in markets for food, and class-based inequality primarily structures the operation of disadvantage in markets for health care. However, while a single inequality form may structure the operation of disadvantage in each market multiple forms of inequality are present. An additional emergent finding is that consumers employ resistance and coping strategies to address their disadvantaged status consistent with human ecology theory. These individual acts of human agency also interact with impediments produced by social structure to create an array of responses to disadvantage that have varying degrees of effectiveness and functionality.
Degree ProgramGraduate College