The Space of Boredom: Homelessness in the Slowing Global Order
Chapter 6 takes the homeless’s pursuit of consumer pleasure into mainstream shopping malls. The chapter details ethnographically the efforts of homeless men and women to use practices of consumption to move beyond a marginal space of boredom and toward a sense of incorporation into the city, but also into Europe and the global economy. Their successes at accessing the pleasures and possibilities of consumption, hard won as they may be, are also cruelly fleeting. This chapter finds the homeless’ turn toward consumer stimulation to manage the felt affects of alienation to be part of the problem, rather than a solution.