Intellectual disability, consumerism and identity: To have and have not?

Alex McClimens, Martin Hyde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Here we consider the consumer society as it currently exists in the UK and examine its relationship and relevance to the population of individuals with intellectual disability. We do this through a reading of the associated literature on theories of shopping and consumption which we then contrast with research evidence as it applies to the lives of people with intellectual disability. By brining together these two perspectives we hope to shine some light on ideas around identity and choice.We then transfer these arguments to the health and social care sector. Here we ask whether an economic model which has been exposed as divisive and exclusionary should be used in the administration of social secutity benefits of the kind accesed by people with a range of disabilities.We conclude that the unchallenged advance of marketisation within health and social care may benefit those who are financially able but for those who are economically disadvantaged the choices offered are illusory at best. © The Author(s) 2012.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-144
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disabilities
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012


  • consumerism
  • economy
  • identity
  • intellectual disability
  • shopping


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