Table of content
LIST OF FIGURES
LIST OF TABLES
LIST OF APPENDICES
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION
1.1. Research background
1.2. Problem statement
1.3. Purpose of research
1.4. Research questions
CHAPTER 2 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
2.2. Conspicuous consumption
2.2.1. Motivation types of conspicuous consumption
2.2.2. Individual differences
2.2.3. Conspicuous consumption in Russia
2.3.2. Narcissism types
2.4. Reference of both phenomenon to the young generation
2.5. Narcissism and conspicuous consumption
2.6. Hypotheses formulating
CHAPTER 3 PRIMARY DATA RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
3.2. Research design
3.3. Sample decision
3.4. Questionnaire design
3.5. Data collection methods
3.6. Data analyses methods
CHAPTER 4 ANALYSIS OF RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
4.1. Data screening and cleaning
4.2. Descriptive statistics
4.2.1. Total sample profile
4.3. Effect of factors on narcissism
4.4. Effects of factors on conspicuous consumption
4.5. Hypotheses testing
4.5.1. Correlation between both phenomenon
CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS
5.1. Summary of research findings
5.2. Managerial Implications
LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 1: Structure of the master thesis
Figure 2: The negative correlation between age and narcissism (Foster, Campbell & Twenge, 2003)
Figure 3: Conceptual framework
Figure 4 . The structure for business empirical research.
Figure 5. The structure of data analysis
Figure 6. Gender distribution among total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 7. Age distribution among total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 8. Distribution of total sample according to family income size (Source: SPSS)
Figure 9. Family size distribution among total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 10. Narcissism level by gender distribution of total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 11. Conspicuous consumption level by gender distribution of total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 12. Narcissism and conspicuous consumption (mean value) level by family size and income size of total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 13. Boxplot: Level of narcissism by the sample sub-groups (Source: SPSS)
Figure 14. Boxplot: Level of conspicuous consumption by the sample sub-groups (Source: SPSS)
Figure 15. Narcissism level distribution among total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 16. Conspicuous consumption level distribution in the total sample (Source: SPSS)
Figure 17. Gender distribution among narcissism facets
Figure 18. Income size distribution among narcissism facets
Figure 19. Family size distribution among conspicuous consumption types of motivation
Figure 20. Age distribution by conspicuous consumption level
Figure 21. Correlation plot: narcissism and conspicuous consumption.
Figure 22. Linear regression: Narcissism as constant, Conspicuous consumption is dependent variables (Source: Stata)
Figure 23. Paired samples t test: gender and levels of narcissism and conspicuous consumption
Figure 24. One-way ANOVA test: levels of narcissism on perception of conspicuous consumption
Figure 25. Cross tabulation: narcissism levels by Interest and Disposition perception
LIST OF TABLES
Table 1. Cities selection with the final sample size
Table 2. Sample distribution
Table 3. One-way ANOVA for demographical factors and narcissism and conspicuous consumption levels. (Source: SPSS)
Table 4. Correlation between the level of narcissism and conspicuous consumption types
LIST OF APPENDICES
Appendix 1. Questionnaire “Narcissism and conspicuous consumption” (English version plus keys).
Appendix 2. Paired Sample T Test: Narcissism and Conspicuous consumption levels (Source: SPSS).
Appendix 3 a, b, c, d. Cross tabulation: level of narcissism with independent factors (age, gender, family size, income size) (Source SPSS).
Appendix 4 a, b, c, d. Cross tabulation: level of cinsoucuous consumption with independent factors (age, gender, family size, income size) (Source SPSS).
Appendix 5. Descriptives for Boxplot: narcissism by sample groups (City + School form / University year + faculty)
Appendix 6. Descriptives for Boxplot: conspicuous consumption by sample groups (City + School form / University year + faculty)
Appendix 7. Cross tabulation: Perception of conspicuous consumption by levels of narcissism
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten
TITLE: Correlation study examining relationship between narcissism and conspicuous consumption of adolescents in Russia.
The phenomenon of Narcissism has been viewed here as a normally distributed personality trait, not as a pathological disorder. Conspicuous consumption in the particular research refers not only to the demonstration of wealth trough buying luxury goods, but also, and mostly, represents all the scope of consuming for not utilitarian, co-called, demonstrative purposes. By young people were meant young generation from age of 16 to 24 years old.
KEYWORDS: narcissism, conspicuous consumption, demonstration, young generation, consumer behavior, Russia.
BACKGROUND: The purchasing of goods to demonstrate the wealth and power for the further purpose of the status maintenance is not a new tendency for Russia nowadays. Conspicuous consumption is frequently linked with the post-communists countries, consumers of those are the worldwide famous for their love to luxury goods. Thus, historically the term refers to the upper class people, who purchase expensive brand products in a pursuit of prestige and honor. However, with the time and many political, economical and social media influences, the phenomenon itself has developed - goods-demonstrators, main players and the initial purposes have been shifted significantly. As one of the main change, the self-related motives became one of the most important group of drivers of the purchasing decision, what is especially interesting to see among the non-mature consumer segment of the country, young generation. Being grown in modern consumer societies and spoiled by wide variety of choices, ironically young people tend to consume goods to feed their self-love. Having been purchased a novelty of the season, a modern youngster hurries to make “selfie” and post it in social network to get some approvals and/or admiration, measuring in “likes”. Many scientist worldwide claim that such habit may root in much deeper reason than just the age of technology, and even assign it to the personal complexes. Deriving from the childhood, those complexes cause in the chronicle narcissism, which is dramatically increasing in people of modern society.
PURPOSE: Therefore, the general idea of this Master Thesis is to investigate the phenomenon of conspicuous consumption in Russia from the totally new perspective - the perspective of young generation of consumers with set of motivation. Thus, the aim of this research is to examine the interdependence between narcissism and conspicuous consumption in young generation of Russian consumers.
METHODOLOGY: The primary data was collected through a self-conducted questionnaire including three parts: psychological to measure narcissism of personality, demonstrative consumption patters and, finally, a perception of conspicuous behavior part. In order to reach the target group directly and avoid bias and misunderstandings while answering, the questionnaire have been spread personally in schools and universities of four cities in Russia. Afterwards, the data have been translated from Russian into English, then manually coded and filled in database. For advanced statistical analysis and manipulating variables is used software as Stata and SPSS Statistics; for less complicated analysis and visual reports is used Microsoft Excel.
MAIN FINDINGS: The obtained results proved not only the strongest relationship between narcissism and conspicuous consumption, but also the alignments between their types. Although such factors as gender and income size did not show the significant correlations with general level of both phenomenon, it has been proved they have effect of the differences in dominating facets of narcissism and motivation type in conspicuous consumption. As was suggested, results revealed the alignments between such factors as family size and age on the respondents level of studies concepts.
CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION
This chapter provides a brief introduction to the chosen subject of the Master Thesis. First of all, it describes the background of the topic and justifies the relevance of chosen problematic. After defining the main purpose, it gives an overview of the structure of following research.
1.1. Research background
All the classical and neo-classical theories explaining consumer behavior patters usually are more economically oriented. They justify and describe the process of buying goods from a rational point of view, as an example - a “marginal-utility” or Modern Utility Theory of Alfred Marshall, by which he distinguished several factors, influencing purchasing intention of customers, such as - functionality of the product, the ease of its usage and an affordable price (Zinkhan, 1992). From this perspective, the other factors as time pressure, current mood of consumer or context of buying, which may take place while the decision is being making, were considered as limitations for being rational.
However, since nineteenth century, marketers began to indicate that purchasing decision cannot be adequately described only by rational models. Hence, in 1890, an American economist and sociologist, William James (Sirgy, 1982; Belk, 1988; Sedikides et al., 2007) made some other assumptions towards the initial motives of people to buy things. He was first, who saw the strong link between material possessions and self-esteem, moreover he assumed, that people even can use purchasing as a tool to define themselves in a better manner (Baudrillard, 1998, p.228). Taking into account his research, the marketing specialists start concidering that buying decision based not only on the basic functions of goods but also and, even more, becoming related to their symbolic features (Sirgy, 1982; Belk, 1988; Sedikides et al., 2007). Although the classical pragmatic theories are still influencing customers’ decision at the particular level, there are also many reasons to buy irrational. To understand consumer behavior when it comes to non- utilitarian purposes, it is important to know what factors or group of factors influence their behavior. A variety of theories has been developed over the years to explain and predict the reasons why people purchase conspicuously.
Therefore, the current researches consequently divided into certain subgroups according to their perception of customers choses motivation. While some people tend to make purchases in order to express and underline their unique personality, even a self-made or fake one (Belk, 1985; Dittmar, 1992; Aaker, 1996); members of second motivation group are making shopping to stimulate their mood or gain positive emotions (Dittmar and Drury, 2000, Dittmar 2011 february), for the third group, consumption is the way to strengthener self-esteem or reach a desired social status (Sedikides et al., 2007), and to prove their self-efficiency or superiority (Dittmar 2011). Often in studies of abovementioned scientists with assignment to not-utilitarian purposes added the term “demonstrative” (Dittmar, 1992; Sirgy, 1982; Belk, 1988; Sedikides et al., 2007). Combining many of motivation factors together, conspicuous consumption may justify the purchasing process from many points of view. That is why the term of conspicuous, or demonstrative, consumption is under a warm discussion not only among the economists and marketers, but also sociologists and psychologists, due to the wide spread roots of such a phenomenon. While first argue that pecuniary consumer behavior is the unfortunate result of capitalism (Veblen, 1912), social stratification and extreme inequality in income (Tse, Belk & Zhou, 1989; Thompson, 2013), others claim it based on the human nature and refers to its protection function of adaptation to consumer society (Campbell, 1995). However, all of the researches, describing such paradox consumer behavior, frequently agree on the self-centered motives of it. That gives a clear alignment to the phenomenon of narcissism, which has been top- discussed all other the world over the recent years.
1.2. Problem statement
The most clearly narcissism have been explained by Sigmund Freud (1925), who explained it as follows: in the childhood every human being used to receive a certain portion of love to oneself, from parents, brothers and sisters, grand parents and so on. With time, right since the puberty period of life, person is usually becoming distant from family, stop receiving that amount of admiration. With time, the “hunger” for such love is slowly collecting; the empty space is required to be replaced. Then, according to Freud, the explanation turn into homosexual problematic, but the main idea is remaining same - not receiving love from others, person is compensating it by self-love, self-admiration and so on. Compensated hunger cannot give the similar to childhood satisfaction, what even pushing person to become ignorant, hysteroid, self- concentrated and derives to admiration-seeking behavior. One of the ways of such behavior is being expressed, through the possessing certain goods-demonstrators with signaling, provoking and attractive of others function, so-called conspicuous consumption (Veblen, 1899). The main purpose of such behavior, Veblen saw in communication function, informative - the conspicuous consumers deliver a “message” about themselves to the reference groups. Being caused by Industrial Revolution, people got jobs, stabile income gained, economical independence and geographical mobility. As a result, a financially and politically powerful middle class emerged, based a fundament for conspicuous consumption development. Using their achieved wealth as a tool, the now rich challenged the aristocratic elite for social recognition, which resulted in a long lasting lavish spending battle. After fall of Soviet Union, such challenge has been immediately adopted by Russians “nouveau riche” (Veblen, 1899), those, who gained wealth during the economical revolution. Mentally still belonging to the lower class, such people used their new obtained wealth to possess goods, unaffordable for others to signal their superiority and power. Russian oligarchs became worldwide famous for their behavior patterns to buy luxury brands. Being raised in condition of strict limitations, old generation had a sort of excuse of the need in economical compensation to fulfill their gap of demand and offer, experienced during life. Although the fall of Soviet Union had place twenty-five years ago and the generation of nouveau riche is already mature and conscious, the battle of demonstration was heritage by youth. Statistics refers, that young generation in Russia purchasing up to 30% much more conspicuously now than did their parents ten years ago, in 1996 (Radina, 2013). Growing in conditions of total welfare, Russian adolescents are being expected to stop the demonstration battle started many years ago. However, since 1991 year, the phenomenon of conspicuous consumption just increasing in geometrical (Radina, et.al., 2013; Kim, 2012). Such statistic points out a question, why young generation is willing to demonstrate wealth, power, one selves even more, than did previous generations?
Years of precise research about the reasoning of lavish consumption defined a number of patterns towards a phenomenon. Thus, starting with Veblen, the initial will to demonstrative behavior dates back to the ancient times when a man-hunter possessed women and captured booty as trophies of the status and thus maintained the leadership position. During the time, the same to Veblen opinion had been discussed, and then, shaped by many authors. While ones were linking conspicuousness as with manifestation of wealth, power, sexuality, attractiveness (Eastman, Goldsmith and Flynn, 1999; Norman, 1992; Simon and Bernheim, 1996), others assign it more with psychological development of a personality (Raskin and Terry, 1988; Vigneron and Johnson, 1999). Meanwhile psychologists characterize young generation as “generation me” (Twenge, 2006; Trzesniewski, Donnellan, 2010; Twenge, Campbell & Gentile, 2012), claiming that the current adolescents on the one hand, are spoiled by opportunities, offer, attention, which provides when modern society and, on the other side, they are anxious, depressed and full of Freud’s theories based complexes. Such characteristics make alignments with a phenomenon of narcissism, which also describes the demonstrative arrogant behavior with desperately attention seeking purpose. As far as narcissism is characterized by both self- orientation and materialism, it may lead to demonstrative attitudes not only in life but also affect a consumption behavior. The role of demonstrativeness in people with defined high level of narcissism has been mentioned in several researches dedicated to changings in performance of narcissus people depending on expecting glory or not (Wallace & Baumeister, 2002). They pointed out, that those, who had higher level of narcissism are more likely to seek for glory rather then lower corresponding to narcissism individuals. Concerning conspicuous behavior in young generation, psychologists noticed that among teenagers the more confident and egoistic is personality, the more social approval is required (Twenge & Im,2007). That makes assume that the conspicuous consumption could be linked with the high level of narcissism and vice versa, the narcissism could lead to a positive attitudes towards conspicuous consumption. Despite that these two phenomenon, narcissism and conspicuous consumption, so often having been mentioned in a recent literature and even linked together with certain common characteristics, they both can be characterized by newness and originality, that is why need to be deeply and precisely analyzed.
1.3. Purpose of research
That are significant to distinguish between three different kinds of purposes this Master Thesis has been done: personal purposes, research and practical purposes. Personal purposes of this study were based on the curiosity about both, phenomenon of narcissism and conspicuous consumption in young generation of consumers in Russia, as well as on desire to engage a particular interest to the nature of the problem and at the end, to change the existing stereotypes about the Russian conspicuous consumption patterns build around the world over the years.
In accordance to this, the research goals were focused on the gaining insights into both phenomenon, while measuring their interdependence. Thus, the main research purpose of this correlational study was to investigate the relationship of narcissism in young generation of Russian consumers and its conspicuous patterns in order to suggest the future prediction of consumption behavior. In details, this study examined the relationship between certain demographical factors and both phenomenon in order to evaluate the difference of nature in both, narcissism and conspicuous consumption and then examined the correlation between their levels. In additional, in order to suggest a certain predictions concerning both phenomenon, have also measured the dominating motivation type of each anomaly concept.
The practical purpose of this Master Thesis research serves two important functions. First, it aimed to help to guide the marketing decisions of companies targeting the young people segment in Russia. In order to ensure that chosen marketing campaign is worth doing and would lead to the desired result, marketers might have need a basic understanding of such an diverse and unknown segment as Russian youth. Second, the results would be crucial in order to justify the initial motives for such phenomenon as narcissism and conspicuous consumption, which may help to predict consumer behavior in such young generation of future consumers, what is the key factor of success. The answer of the general research question about the character of relationship the narcissism has with conspicuous consumption, can directly contribute to the practical purposes implied in marketing campaigns launched.
The relative difference of this study was in the focus on young generation, who is limited financially but still tend to show the conspicuous consumption patterns, while the majority of investigations and research papers are based on analysis of the impact of income level and occupation or social status of upper class consumer segment. Nevertheless, these personal goals of this study are overlapping with the research and the final utilitarian purposes as well.
1.4. Research questions
In order to justify the chosen problematic, the following research questions have to be answered by the research process:
RQ1. Is there a statistically significant relationship between the phenomenon of narcissism and conspicuous consumption?
RQ2. What are the common measures between narcissism and conspicuous consumption? Can these common measures be used as predictors towards the phenomenon’s level of expression?
This Master Thesis is composed by five chapters, each of those follows the certain logic and has its own sub-divisions. First chapter starts with justification of problematic by describing topic background, which leads to the problem statement and explains the main purpose with defining exact research questions. The second chapter construes the theoretical framework by defining both phenomenon of following investigation, narcissism and conspicuous consumption, what helps to decide the hypotheses to test. Third chapter is dedicated to methodology of research, in details explaining the process of designing a questionnaire, sampling decisions and the procedure of pretest. All the statistical data analysis and testing the hypotheses are presented in chapter four. In the last chapter, together with proposed managerial implications of main research founding there is given a summary conclusion, with limitations mentioned, about a whole scope of work.
Abbildung in dieser Leseprobe nicht enthalten
Figure 1: Structure of the Master Thesis
CHAPTER 2 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
Review the literature about research questions and theories based on which the research hypotheses can be established. The chapter starts with a shifting in perception of consumption motives over the years, then it explains the theory of conspicuous consumption in general, characteristics of it, worldwide and also in terms of Russian market. Chapter also gives an overview of narcissism as one of the main characteristics of young generation, its definition and influencing factors, and then goes to discussion the phenomenon in terms of consumer behavior.
The question “Why do people buy?” has always been a special topic of discussion among economical and, in recent year, even psychological studies, mostly due to its socio-cultural shifting in modern world. The initial concept of consumption built up from studies of Karl Marx, Thorsten Veblen, Georg Simmel and others. That is why for a long period of time the consumption had been a purely economical phenomenon and considered only as one of the four stages of economical circulated flow. For example, Marx (1887) considered consumption as a determination of capitalist production; he claims that “only by being exchanged, the products of labour acquire a socially uniform objectivity as values, which is distinct from their sensuously varied objectivity as articles of utility” (1867, p.332). And basically, if such goods do not demonstrate any worth in their exchange value, it is better to remain them for usage rather than for exchange. Unlike Marx, Simmel (1907) explained consumption and consumerism using the quantitative and qualitative values for society, putting a bit more worth than just demand like Marx. In his researches, Simmel highlighted an existing of alignment between self and goods, which is shown trough the “philosophy of money”, the certain added commercial power to the exchanged of goods. He claims that when it comes to fashion, on the one hand, “each of us has a tendency to imitate others while on the other hand; we also have a tendency to distinguish ourselves from others” (1904, pp.74).
Nevertheless, at the end of twentieth century, the general concept of consumption was revised by Bourdieu (1977) and Baudrillard, who explained it in terms of modern “consumer society”. Baudrillard considered consumption as an economical utilitarian process, “symbolic exchange of goods and communications in order to present own self to the society” (1998, p.37). Consequently, from the meaning of consumption the accent had shifted towards the volumes, processes and values, which influence the mind of final consumer. The deeper investigations of consumer behavior, the more knowledge about the consumer decision-making process had been required. In classical economical theories the role of consumers was just rational, thus did not attract attention that much. Herbert Simon (1991) was first, who proposed existence of irrational influence of decision-making process. According to him, being restricted by own cognitive limitations and/or structure of the environment, a consumer is seeking for satisfactory solution rather than an optimal one, ruled by a principle of compensation. The next big theory in developing consumers’ irrationality was Daniel Kahneman, who proved the influence of psychological, social, emotional and economic factors on decision-making process. Tversky and Kahneman (2003) suggested that all the choices person even done in life have been made under the influence of certain “frames”, the abstract notions that serve to structure social meanings. Applying their theory on consumption practices, could be explained, for instance, why some buy bio products, being not even ecological supportive, or, others create a great hustle buying overheads during the holiday times, even if they do not consume that much. Such senseless behavior, based rather on social environmental preconditions than on logical rationale, lead to a totally new perception of consumption - demonstrative or conspicuous consumption.
2.2. Conspicuous consumption
The initial concept of conspicuous consumption is originally associated with a name of Thorsten Bunde Veblen, who revealed a term and characterized it as “the unnecessary and unproductive expenditures” (1899, p.21). He claimed that people buy, because “the wealth or power must be put in evidence, esteem is only rewarded on evidence” (p.24). In his opinion, the only way to prove such evidences is through conspicuous consumption of certain, meaningful and symbolic for society, goods. One of the main reasons of purchasing conspicuously Veblen saw in maintaining a reputation among social group, therefore the term have been also named in a literature as status or positional consumption (Eastman, Goldsmith and Flynn, 1999; Norman, 1992; Simon and Bernheim, 1996). He suggested the term “pecuniary strength”, which explains the ability of person not only to possess but also to demonstrate the capital. If he strong enough, only then deserves to have a high reputation, honor, prestige, and esteem within the community. Regarding to such a definition of phenomenon, it is clear that successful signaling of consumption give the feeling of superiority to the consumer, power and authority, enhanced the self-esteem and stimulated ignorance towards lower classes. Hence appeared the association of conspicuous consumption with a hierarchical gradation, which divided society into levels according to the financial abilities, divided also an offer of goods regarding the classes. Lavish spending was “symptomatic of the superfluous life-style of the rich, wearing diamond-studded jewelry and overindulging in luxurious foods and alcohol” (Diggins, 1978, p.17). Elite of the society could effort luxury and import goods more likely than lower class members, what predetermined the meaning of good-demonstrator as the objects of conspicuous display in traditional societies. There is any scientifically definition of goods-demonstrators in the literature. Old-times theoretic focused this definition primarily on servants, food, clothing, and housing (Veblen 1912, Mason 1981). Above all, as Veblen notes, the objects of conspicuous consumption must be wasteful, or possess no useful value, in order to reflect credibly on one's reputation (1912, pp. 97-98). Therefore, entertainment has been also included into luxuries list of higher-class communities.
While characterizing the consumption concepts in postindustrial society, Baudrillard (1998) declared that the increasing level of life caused many shifting in possession practices. Goods of usual consumption are loosing their value because they are not signaling anything, just reflecting a basic need. Thus, the consumption also stimulated the simultaneously growing social stratification. Goods stratification had also reached its extremes nowadays. Among the characteristics of goods-demonstrators, quality has to remain at the high level, better if it would be developed with a newest technology integrated devise, or even know-how. Veblen mentioned the, as excellent, superior good. Consequently, goods for higher class have been exported from other countries, what in this case was a direct association with a sustainability, uniqueness, what had added value to the purchase. As an example of such good could be German BMW automobiles, Swiss Rolex watches (Andler, 1984), designer clothing (Belk, 1986). If these goods-demonstrators had most orientation on male population, women start demonstrating conspicuous consumption from different perspective. Beyond the quality and other utilitarian benefits, more often these goods for women involve unreasonable high price (Bruan and Wicklund, 1989; Sundie, Kenrick, Griskevicius, Tybur, Vohs and Beal, 2010). Thus, in the early 90’s appeared new trend - cosmetic surgeries. People lead by the desire of internal compensation of complexes visibly enhanced particular body features to increase the status recognition among the referent group. The paradox of cosmetic surgery in the fact, that being healthy, patient pays a certain extra fee “to remove wrinkles, enlarge breasts, tuck tummies or siphon unwanted fat from the buttocks, hips or thighs” in order to display the correct or socially approved look to gain a social prestige (Brooks, 1981). Another characteristics, derived from female good-demonstrator purchase has been developed over the resent years in research dedicated to protection function of status goods (Sivanathan & Petit, 2010). As the main outcome deriving from that investigation, women perceive possibility of customization the purchase as one of the main characteristics of good-demonstrator. They assign customization to the desire to be unique, unrepeatable, but be within the fashion flow. According to Simmel (1907), this is a paradox of fashion - the desire to be different and the same time possess what everyone has.
Taking into account the abovementioned basic characteristics of the phenomenon, it is necessary to look thorough the list of motives and factors to be considered when referring to conspicuous consumption patterns.
2.2.1. Motivation types of conspicuous consumption
Ever since Veblen (1899) theorized the nature of conspicuous consumption, has sparked a lively and continuous debate on whether the demonstrative behavior of customers is determined by the extreme wealth and social status or the childhood complex and lowest social class of those. In “The theory of leisure class” he highlighted two possible motives of phenomenon: “invidious comparison” and “pecuniary emulation”. First means a motivation, which refers to the attempt of a member of higher social class to distinguish himself from members of a lower ones. And second, contrary, represented by lower class members, who are struggling to pretend be seen as a higher ones. No matter what is the reasoning, consumer behavior remains the same in both cases - they mimic the consumption of desired others, adding to the goods a symbolic value of demonstration. Following the initial theory, the later researches tried to find motives of such behavior, and contingently divided them into several socio-psychological concepts. First of those, as mentioned already, demonstration behavior as a way to maintain membership in the social group, or in other words - to keep up with Joneses (Abel, 1990) . The decision to possess the certain good comes from a desire to keep up with the particular social group’s level, which members of those are having yet. Such consumption rooted in deep childhood, when children ask their parents to buy the same items (toys, school accessories, etc.) as their classmates have. Psychologist from Russia, defined a list of good-demonstrations while investigating the communication and behavioral patterns of adolescents in high school. Radina, Shaidakova and Mokhnatkina (2013) claim that young people are more than others prone to possess certain goods in order to manipulate their socialization within the group. By goods-demonstrators young people defined gadgets (smartphones, music player, computer, sport watch, etc.) at the first place, expensive fashionable clothes, at the second. Also, the significant demonstrative function has possession of own vehicle (car, motor bike, bicycle, etc.), what was mentioned mostly, by male respondents.
The second group derives from social stratification and sense of inequality, what serves to demonstration as an effect from social comparison. According to the theory of social comparison of Festinger (1954), human beings are born with tendency to compare themselves with the others in order to build the clearer perception of oneself. According to him, the most likely people will compare themselves among the common social class rather than with hierarchically higher or lower ones. However, Harbough (1996) argues that at the fist place people tend to compare themselves with “a bit better” individuals, for instance, the best student at class, or the promoted colleague at work and so on. Therefore, the children tend to step by their “ideal”, sometimes relatives, usually brother or sister, or famous person “from TV” (Ordabayeva and Chandon, 2008). Such comparisons often lead to deviations among young people, sometimes even with negative effect. By this, Hicks D. and Hicks J. (2012) refer to the signaling function of conspicuous consumption, meaning that this could reflect the inequality of income of families, what caused on crimes increasing level. It other words, The more level of penetration of conspicuous consumption in society, the higher risk of the crimes from jealousy by young people (p.16). Linking to the current studies, the perception of conspicuous consumption has been examined on the large sample of 2 445 young people from United States of America in mean age of 24 years old. After a short combination of videos with a people who clearly showed off, the respondents were offered to evaluate their feelings towards the person from the screen. Thus, majority reflected interest, jealousy and aggression towards a conspicuous behavior (Hicks J. & D., 2012).
The third group of scientist sees demonstration as the way to show off wealth and status. Main idea of this opinion is that individuals are very conscious in terms of their relative status in the society and usually tend to ‘mend’ their ‘self’ under constant attack due to various social pressures, therefore they take recourse to status-signaling consumption, as an easiest way. Such a pattern of human behavior has been investigated precisely and proved through empirical researches over the last decade. Frank (1985) and Basu (1989) pointed out the stable alignment between preferences of choice, which would be considered as the concern for particular social status. The same opinion has reflection in studies of Bagwell, Bernheim and Douglas (1996), Glazer and Conrad (1996) and Ireland (1994). They explained in details the psychological coherent process how conspicuous consumption is used as a determinant for one’s income or wealth, which is equated to high status. What is important to mention, that being not rich, people tend to consume conspicuously with the same pleasure, it works as a protection function for vulnerable people with low self-esteem (Sivanathan & Petit, 2010). In contrast to founders of this theory, the latest research of the same motivation group, invoke that not only affordability of high price goods could be a signal for status. For example, students are often changing their clothes, buying cheap ones but frequently, they are gaining attention by quantity, no quality. Consequently, “in conditions of compressed or limited financial recourses, the context of conspicuous consumption is changing but the initial goal is remaining same - to demonstrate success” (Cole, Goerge and Postlewaite, 1992, p.1107). By context authors meant the changing of goods-demonstrators, the frequency of purchase, the purchase of counterfeit products, the group of people whom customer prefers to demonstrate bought goods and the occasions of use of purchases.
These main four groups have been considered as a basic theoretical framework for such phenomenon. However, they gave a surface understanding of nature of phenomenon of conspicuous consumption, despite of more recent studies, which give much broader variations of motive factors. While scanning trough paper works of recent years searching for evidences of conspicuous consumption in young generation in particular, have been concluded 6 more major motivation types and 4 little sub-groups, which still can be considered in some cases, as dominating factors in conspicuous purchasing decision.
First type is the Paranoiac conspicuous consumption. In the literature have been described the type of consumers, who behave according to their chosen scenario, like actor being on the stage (Wicklund and Gollwitzer, 1982). For paranoiac consumer the additional value has not the fact of purchase but the process of demonstration itself due to the main motivation in the desire to impress others, to collect admiration, to attract as much attention as possible. Such person gets satisfaction by getting a feedback about his outfit and behavior in general - does not matter positive or negative (Ruskin and Christen, 2003). By buying goods, the part of price they ready to pay for emotions and feeling from others, because they pathologically need these feelings to feed their “hunger” for self-esteem, expressed by Sigmund Freud (1925) in terms of narcissism study. Ordabayeva (2003) assigned such behavior mostly to the adolescence females, who paint the hair in extravagant colors, talking by phone loudly, dress in a provoking manner, have weird or eye-catching accessories, bright make up - all these in order to make people look at them, pay attention to their personality.
Status is the second definite motivation group, described by many researchers, who have ever investigated question of conspicuous consumption. Thereby, Vigneron and Johnson (1999) mentioned status seeking behavior as basic for the male, especially for not very successful men. Pursuing a career growth, such consumer wants to reach and maintain the high level status in society trough having the certain style in clothing, leisure activities and particular hobbies, like golf or collecting expensive Japanese knifes (Vigneron and Johnson, 1999). The choice of categories and symbols could be explained by the values associated with the targeting status. For example, a young man, who has just started his career, buys an expensive suit and/or stylish ties, rich perfume, flagman mobile phone, because, in his opinion, those little details might help him to show the level and to be viewed as a rich successful businessman (Sundie, et.al., 2011). Psychologists say, that the same piece of outfit which person is trying to demonstrate is more likely to be the status defining good-demonstrator. The first opinion of other people would be build after assessment of such goods. To conclude, the status consumption - is an attempt to buy elitism.
Third group of motivation pushing the people to buy goods conspicuously is their personal individuality. Being good in something people are trying to demonstrate it on public. Usually such behavior based on certain talents or skills, which differ the person from the mass. This type of customers usually do not care much about the price of the good-demonstrator, the most important criteria here - is uniqueness, the fact of possession something very rare, what no one else has, in order to highlight own independence and outstanding (Ordabayeva and Chandon, 2003). Referring to the past times of blocked demand of post-soviet Russia, such goods might be represented by practically every import item (Shukla, 2008). Recent studies defined that such goods as hand made are gaining popularity in conspicuous purposes (Sundie, et.al., 2011; Sivanathan and Petit, 2010). Following the same motivation of signaling self-positioning, some people switched purchasing choices towards bio and fair trade products.
It has been mentioned in psychological literature, that having an outstanding talent, individual do not always tent to put it on the table, but express it unconsciously, what sometimes, could be even over demonstrative (Raskin, 1980). Also Simmel (1904), describing fashionable personalities referred to the expression of their creativity trough dressing extravagant. Thus, creativity might be expressed in one person together with individuality. Such behavior usually fits to female due to psychosomatic characteristics of gender. Girls are usually easier concentrating than boys, more diligent and creative, thus can possibly decorate or embroider their accessories and clothes in terms of creative self-realization.
Next group is dedicated to both gender in the same extend because the motivation factor is prestige demonstration. It is different from status group, which is mostly used for strategy of career promotion and supported by right goods-demonstrators. In contrast, prestige consumption is for those, who already have a certain status in society and trying to maintain it and develop. Such motivation has been described in details in as a privilege of leisure class (Veblen, 1899) for those the price is absolutely equal to its quality. Since then such persons became veblinist. Choosing between two similar goods, the veblinist will definitely prefer the most expensive one. The higher the price, the better (the more sustainable, more delicious, fresh, better quality and etc.). Economists clarify that value of good or service is increasing together with increasing of its price. However, in this case, the price does not characterize the goods, but customer (Beutler and Dickson, 2008). Prestige consumption is defining by a restricted accessibility to the purchase due to its high price, or, in some cases, because of deficit, what helps to create a signaling message about speciality of owner of such things.
The next, sixth group of motivation factors has been at the first time mentioned by Simmel (1904) and dedicated to the sense of fashion. For those consumers the main criteria is novelty of the season, all the fashion industry works for them, textile, glamour, cosmetics, design and etc. this type is mostly referred to female, but recent researches claim that is not a truth anymore, men are becoming more and more fashion addict (Sundie, et. al., 2011). As an example of this type of motivation could be people, buying all products of just one brand, or those, who sleep under Apple stores before new product is coming out.
The following below sub-groups of conspicuous consumption are not that clear expressed neither in a scientific literature, nor in related study papers, however the psychological description of behavior of adolescence people showed tendencies towards this behavior very clear, enabled to make some assumptions that it could have something in common with conspicuousness.
All the abovementioned demonstration attitudes were a manifestation of oneself, but in this particular type the motivation is in desire to achieve a certain strategic goal. The self- affirmation in terms of conspicuous consumption is a manifestation of motivation to avoid failures, the desire to get away from negative self-assessment and to ensure the high evaluation from the others through using particular goods-demonstrators. As an example of such demonstrative behavior in terms of consumption could be a demonstrative non-consumption, due to some limitations person, being not able to consume good-demonstrator, is refusing to admit the desire to buy it. For the similar reason of protest, teenagers start to dress absurdly and belong to the subculture, does not fit the standards to somehow distinguish themself. Another example could be just slightly related to consumption patterns, however still could explain the motivation of certain segment of consumers. Accordingly to the proposed type of demonstration, young boy, being a “looser” at school can start fighting, proving the perception of “bad boy”, or lately, can start buying cigarettes, motorbikes, alcohol and etc. - the goods, which have a certain link to the “bad” behavior, as accepted by society (Twenge and Im, 2007).
This particular type is referred to the theoretical explanation of social comparison. In contrast to Veblen, many researchers declare that people from medium and lower class are struggling from conspicuous consumption much more than rich people (Wallace and Baumeister, 2002; Hicks D. and Hicks J., 2012; Harbough, 1996). The main motivation in this case, is to run out of poverty, to demonstrate being not blow the line of wealth, being not out of the world. Scientists named such struggling “to keep up with Joneses” (Ruskin and Christen, 2003). In order to balance inequality, usually, such consumers are ready to pay last money to purchase the trend. The evident example could be a poor student, saving on food, but having the expensive iPhone smartphone.
Demonstration is usually associated with «being best in a class» syndrome (Basu, 1989), with desire to have the best, in other words - quality over quantity. The main consumer, having such motivation - is a perfectionist, who believes that it is better to have one high quality thing rather than plenty, but like everyone around has. Consequently, the high quality good will be noticed and highly evaluated by people around. Vigneron and Johnson (1999) were ones, who supported the idea of perfectionism purchase motivations referring to the quality and design successful combination.
Next group has references to many bibliographical evidences, but it is difficult to distinguish it separately from other motivation types, because fulfilling the needs of every group brings a certain emotional satisfaction to the conspicuous consumer. First, who emphasized hedonic motivators were also Vigneron and Johnson (1999) in their research of factors, influencing conspicuous consumption. This type is “not direct conspicuous consumption, just partially because the person is not working on his image” (p.36). Hedonist-consumer tends to buy unique or luxury goods, which are full of meaning or memories. The main difference from the classic conspicuous consumer in the way he attracts attention, doing it by the expression of happiness and certain happy behavior. Children psychologists named this behavior “autonomous self-demonstration” (Twenge, Campbell & Gentile, 2011).
After clarifying the main motivation groups of adolescents towards conspicuous consumption, it is necessary to look trough the individual differences, which have been found as predisposing for possibility of expressing the phenomenon. Thus, the main aim of second part of the chapter- to figure out and explain the phenomenon among people with different life background.
2.2.2. Individual differences
While various of scientists name a number of social reasons stimulating conspicuous consumption behavior in people, other scholars believe that social factors have minimal influence and assign such phenomenon to the human personality as a main driver. Thereby, Marshall (1890) sure that everyone was born to be a demonstrator of things, of own success and we cannot escape from our “the most powerful desire” (p.81) of ostentation, which will always a part of human being. He was not alone considering demonstration as the natural trait. The same opinion shared Rac (1905), who referred the tendency of self-presentation to a natural expression of individuality, vanity and self-confidence. He agreed with Marshall’s perception that conspicuous consumption for human being has always been “the greatest internal passion” (p.342).
Gender: Refereeing to those theorists who assigned conspicuous consumption to a human being nature, it is necessary to mention Sigmund Freud (1925) and Thorsten Veblen. Both claimed that conspicuousness comes from the biology and signaling, apart others, the gender factor. The initial will to demonstrative behavior dates back to the ancient times when a man-hunter possessed women and captured booty as trophies of the status and thus maintained the leadership position. Since the not many things changes, according to Veblen, he noted in The theory of leisure class (1894, p.201) that “still, even today, in spite of the nominal and somewhat celebrated demise of the patriarchal idea, there is that about the dress of women which suggest the wearer is something in the nature of a chattel” (Veblen 1899, 201). Consequently, the direct function of consuming and using goods belongs to women, while its hidden part and unconscious links point out a man as a main demonstrator. Although Freud (1925) while having the same point of view on the gender deviation, still justified it with the different reasons, claiming on natural disposition towards aggression, dominance and authority of men nature and womens’ function to attract the best males by showing off best qualities. Same view has De Faia (2009) linking conspicuousness also to the sexual selection, exactly to mechanism, defined by biologists, which explains the process of interaction between two genders. Demonstrating the valuable characteristics or observing those from others, species make a decision rather to start communication with opposite sex or not.
Nevertheless, there is no a definite answer, which gender is consuming more conspicuously. While some of conducted investigations displayed that the patterns towards conspicuous consumption is more evident among men (Janssens et al., 2011; Braun and Wicklung, 1989; O’ Cass and Frost, 2002), others proved opposite - women are more likely to consume demonstratively (Sundie,et. al., 2011; Bernheim and Laurie, 1996; Mason, 1981) . Even though results my seem the same - both, men and women prone to buy lavish goods with the same frequencies, however motivation for such behavior seems to be different. Men’s strategy answering mostly mating purposes, the certain qualities of goods make them to gather together into groups, discuss, upgrade, play and ect. (Sundie et al., 2011). The motivation for women is contrastly different, being more individualistic or independence consumers, women prefer to demonstrate goods from a distance, aiming to get some emotions from demonstration- admiration, jealousy or desire from the others (Mason, 1981; Wang and Griskevicius, 2013). Furthermore, referring to the Freud, womens’ demonstration armed them to attract the partner, what could be the most significant and sustainable motivation other the ages (Bernheim and Laurie, 1996).
To sum up the scientific literature dedicated to the gender aspect of phenomenon, it is necessary to repeat that there is no evident prove whether men or female consume more conspicuously. However, that is clear, that the motivation for such behavior is totally differentiate the nature of phenomenon in each gender.
Age: Marshall (1890) theorized that the desire to conspicuously consume comes with us from the cradle and never leaves us till we go the grave. However, some findings in a literature can argue his point of view, by proving that young individuals are the conspicuous consumers par excellence, because of their great attention to others and to mass media (Grant, 2004; Baumeister, 1982). Moreover, adolescent are also tend to influence their (adult) relatives’ spending patterns (Moschis & Churchill, 1979). Shukla (2008) suggests (based mainly on a survey conducted with customers of the BMW, Mercedes Benz and Lexus dealerships) that middle-aged consumers, like the youth segment, are also a significant target group that needs to be studied, in the area of conspicuous consumption. These consumers feel several years younger then their actual age and so there is a difference between their chronological age and their spending habits (Underhill & Cadwell, 1983). Although middle-aged individuals have generally relatively higher incomes, a more stable career and a higher access to credit and debit resources, which give them higher capacities to pay for conspicuous consumption (Spero & Stone, 2004), the young generation has more reason and motivation to use conspicuous consumption in terms of socializing and sexual signaling patterns (Beutler & Dickson, 2008; Freud, 1925). Thus, in general the two groups, which theoretically has the higher levels of conspicuous consumption are adolescents and middle-aged people.
Education: Historically, education has been a privilege of higher-class people due to lack of professionals, high price and limited accessibility. Usually it was more referred to fashion rather than utilitarian purposes, to have a private teacher or speak French language (Festinger, 1954). As a circle, the only high class people could effort to have high level of education, which in return brings higher access to financial resources and a stronger need to signal the achieved wealth, status, prestige, etc. (Amaldoss & Jain, 2005; Chao & Schor, 1998; Yoon & Seok, 1996). Since the past times, languages and private teachers are also symbolizing the elite education in Russia. Thereby, rich parents tend to send their children abroad to study languages or hire a private teachers to them for extra learning of school subjects, what derives to relatively higher price compare to standard education. Knowing a foreign language, or passing exams better, the child gains more authority among classmates and respect from teachers. Being grown up, he will have more opportunities in future life compare to those, who has not been studied with private teacher of abroad. Having these opportunities, the child will get a better profession and possibly higher income. Thus, it might be concluded that not only the higher education itself associated with conspicuous consumption already, but also the people with higher education should express relatively higher levels of conspicuous consumption, which accompanying higher levels of education.
Income: Historically, the level of money possessed referred to a social gradation at different, from individual to county, levels. Today, conspicuous consumption is still model of status-seeking and self-centered behavior, in which individuals use lavish spending as a signal of their income. In a series of research, the income status has been tested as the factor affecting the general conspicuous patterns (Kaus, 2013). The obtained result demonstrates, that both poor and reach people tend to purchase conspicuously, even though reach are doing it more often. Also the category of goods-demonstrators are totally different, low-level of income people tend to purchase technics, vehicles and clothing in big amounts, while people with high level of income purchase services and branded accessories more.
Place: Conspicuous consumption, often being characterized a society-oriented behavior, depend not only on personal traits of the consumers, but also on the surrounding him social condition. Thus, Frank (1985) suggested that conspicuous consumption might be more influent by societies, where long-standing social networks do not exist, in ergo areas with high labor mobility and in big cities rather than small towns and villages. According to Thorsten Veblen (1899), it has been also concluded, that a less levels of conspicuous consumption would be expressed in small towns and rural settings, as he mentioned “through the medium of neighborhood gossip… everybody’s affairs, especially everybody’s pecuniary status, are known to everybody else” (p.47).
Race: A study conducted in United States of America proved, that race might have some implications on the conspicuous consumption patterns among population. Main outcome of the research was fact, that Blacks and Hispanics spend larger shares of their total expenditure on conspicuous goods as clothing, jewellery and cars, than do comparable Whites (Charles, Hurst & Roussanov, 2009). Another similar study have been conducted in South Africa and declaired, that non-White households spend from 30% up to 50% more on visible consumption than do comparable White ones (Kaus, 2013). In both cases, the influence of other factors has been equal among both studied groups and just race difference has been placed. The difference of the categories of good-demonstrators has been also noticed, thus White races has been spending more on health, medical services and education, while cars, clothes are still remained main purchase target for others. According to authors of both researches, the reasons for these racial differences can be found in the discrimination and the marginal position of non-White individuals, even in modern societies(Charles, Hurst & Roussanov, 2009; Kaus, 2013).
Finally, it should be mentioned that the impact of the aforementioned factors on conspicuous consumption patterns may vary from one society to another. This is due to different historical, social, economic, political, or even legal backgrounds. (Corneo & Jeann, 1997; Anderson, 2003; Tse, Belk & Zhou, 1989) In order to prove so, many researches claim that conspicuous consumption is found to be higher in individualist cultures than in collectivist ones (Dunning, 2007; Basu, 1989; Shukla, 2008; Ordabayeva & Chandon, 2003).
2.2.3. Conspicuous consumption in Russia
Although Russians are world wide famous conspicuous consumers, the phenomenon of conspicuous consumption is rather new in Russia. The extremely extensive development it gained after the fall of Soviet Union in 1991, when the economical borders have been destroyed. Previously in Russia, in the period of strict limitations of import goods and weak purchasing power, the products, which are falling under definition of good-demonstrators, were available only to a particular group of people, mostly government or military members, who got them illegally. Hence, there is no clear statistical justification of conspicuous consumption volumes. Post soviet Russia experienced a huge flow of international products into the market, however the purchasing power of Russian population remained extremely low. Such economical inequality lead to social stratification, people are divided into classes, with the majority of them below the poverty line. This exactly time, the new segment and future target group for conspicuous consumption has appeared - nouveaux riches. They have been the only segment able to purchase such expensive products, because they meant luxury life. The very first luxury shop was opened in 1993 in Moscow, just two years after fall of Soviet Union. Such brands as Chanel, Gucci, Jil Sander start being sold to the Russian elite. The attitude towards conspicuous consumption penetrated and become beloved by Russians immediately and furiously. The process of spending money conspicuously displays the wealth and marks the social distinction what - the main features, which have been legally forbidden by previous regimes, thus the ideological commitment to equality of Russian people is adapted conspicuousness very fast, especially after the fall of communism (Thompson, 2013).
Due to its complexity the term of conspicuous consumption shares the same amount of attention as from economists, marketers and sociologist as from psychologists. Demonstrative consumption is a mass phenomenon in Russia and around the world nowadays, but still can be characterized by newness and originality, yet not a very widely studied field within the country.
Therefore, it needs to be deeply and precisely analyzed.
The initial concept of excessive self-love has roots in an ancient Greek mythology. The legend tells about a young hunter named Narcissus, who was loved by everyone because of his gorgeous beauty, but did not love anyone in return. Such behavior caught the ire of the goddess Aphrodite, who cursed him. He desperately felt in love with his own reflection, and spending all days staring at it, he was just unable to stop. Not knowing that it is his own image that he looks, he could not stand the separation with his love object anymore, Narcissus drowned himself into water. Since then such a fixation with oneself and someone’s physical appearance has been named Narcissism (American Psychiatric Association, 2000). The myth based the perception of narcissists like of people, who unaware both of the intensity of own self-love and how it affects the lives of others, myth also purposed to say that the act of unknowingly taking yourself as a love subject ultimately leads to desperation and loneliness.
Although narcissism as a phenomenon have been described in such an ancient time and since when it has appeared worldwide throughout many historical evidences as literature and religious, it seems that the real interest narcissistic personality has gained attention only in late twentieth century. The very first time Narcissism was mentioned in a scientific literature in 1898 by sexologist Havelock Ellis, who used the term narcissus-like and explained the tendency of emotions to be lost and almost entirely absorbed by self-admiration (Raskin and Terry, 1988). According to his definition, narcissism is deeply gendered trait of character, what found proves in many followers’ researches. Following the similar idea, Freud (1914) introduced the concept of narcissism as adoration one accords themselves in light of them being an object of sexual desire. After such an introduction of phenomenon it has been considered only in a clinical literature because had been attracting attention mostly of psychiatrists and psychoanalytic as non-normal behavior. Based on that, from the medical point of view, narcissism has always been defined as a psychological disorder (NDP). Earlier references of narcissism such psychiatric manuals for disorders (e.g. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th ed. [DSM-IV]) define it as “a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, self-focus, and self-importance” (American Psychiatric Association, 2000). According to this definition, narcissists are obsessed by the idea of success and power, their own superiority and beauty (Emmons, 1987; Raskin and Terry, 1988). Such people prone to conspicuous behavior, they are seeking for admiration from others thus always trying to attract attention to their personality. The same time, scientists claim that they are vulnerable in terms of critics, thus frequently demonstrating aggression towards the threats to their self-esteem; It is also easy to make them feel ashamed or even humiliated (Campbell and Foster, 2007; Dunning, 2007; Dittmar, 2011).
Referring to these two opposite sides, the phenomenon displays quite paradoxal in people what makes it more difficult to define. The characteristics and symptoms of narcissism are different from the persons with different age, gender, generations and many other factors, which have been discussed over the years by researchers.
2.3.2. Narcissism types
Gender: In the past, the concept of narcissism has been explored and described by Sigmund Freud (1914), who distinguished two compulsory types of phenomenon. According to him, first type, “primary” narcissism, exists in all human beings in the certain extend from the beginning of life. While developing influencing of different external factors influencing the personality development over the years may cause in a different levels of “secondary” narcissism in the future. By such factors Freud assumed parental influence, behavior and upbringing attitudes, also amount of children in a family, their gender and age. For instance, he postulates that in small families, where parents express exaggerated love towards their kids, the child will have a need of self-love in future life, what Freud called hunger (1914, p.73) to explained the process how primary narcissism turns into secondary one. Thus, using the theory of hunger, the highest probability of secondary narcissism to develop from optimal to pathological version, could be seen in a male children due to different nature of ego from female gender (Campbell, 1973). According to Freud and his modern followers (Bradlee and Emmons, 1992; Gabriel, Critelli and Ee, 1994; Tschanz, Morf and Turner, 1998;), with the same hunger, gained from the parental love, due to certain reasons the females have more opportunities for love transactions in adulthood rather than males. The unsatisfied hunger in men with time turns into self-esteem, than self-admiration and further qualities of pathological narcissists (Campbell, 1973). To prove the theory, Foster and Campbell (2003) made a research which reported that in terms of individual differences of the phenomenon, men tend to be more narcissistic than women over than 12% of respondents from a large sample (n=3445) and wide range of age differences (M=25.4 years). The reason for this they and others, pointing the same importance of gender, saw in sexual signaling function of narcissism traits in male gender (Bushman and Baumeister, 1999; Rhodewalt and Morf, 1995; Twenge and Foster, 2010). Such a function expressed the most in the wild nature, where the male species have to demonstrate power and superiority other others to maintain the leadership status for reproduction purpose. To the same conclusion about gender difference of phenomenon arrived Christopher Lasch (1979), who underlines that with the context of social class, age education and occupation, more than 16% of population who had been falling under the narcissistic main characteristics were males, what proves the tight interdependence between gender and the high level of narcissism. However, what is more important, he was one of the first who pointed out that narcissism is not a disorder, but a diffuse psychological response to many factors of modern life: the culture, social relations, level of life, education and many others. Lasch supported Freud in the primary narcissism existence in all the people from born, however his view on factors, influencing secondary narcissism happened to be more sociological. In the recent research, it has been decided, while narcissism having significant relation with gender, but every time corresponding to its level differently, to link it with the level of income. Then, comparing both factors together, that will give the certain definite result (Foster, Campbell & Twenge, 2003). Appeared, that income and gender were significantly related and men, showing much higher level of income, demonstrated also the level of narcissism relatively higher than female respondents. Surprisingly, gender appeared to be significantly related to the age as well, that enable to make predictions that male reporting greater narcissism than females due to influencing of other factors like income level and age.
Culture: Culture has a great influence on the shaping personality, especially when it comes to adolescence and young adulthood. Many psychologists claim that culture strongly influences our personalities and views of ourselves (Twenge, Campbell & Gentile, 2012 ). Even within a single country, culture may influent people to define themselfes quite differently.
Age: While some of investigators predict that personality traits are very stable, especially at the age after 30, referring to the fact, that narcissism is unlikely to change during the years in one personality, others sure that narcissism is changing within the timeframe among people. Thus, majority of investigation dedicated to the age difference in narcissism. They signal that younger people demonstrate higher level of narcissism than older people due to the psychological modeling of character during the childhood (Stewart & Healy, 1989; Foster, Campbell & Twenge, 2003). Generational differences could be referent to the age differences and also predict the higher level of phenomenon in younger people, who grew up in eras characterized by high individualism and emergent narcissism (Lasch, 1979; Twenge & Campbell, 2001; Twenge, Campbell & Gentile, 2011;). At the Figure 2 its shown how exactly birth cohort may affect the level of narcissism due to a different socio-cultural environment, affecting personality development in general, not only the narcissistic disorder. For example, Christopher Lasch (1979), in The Culture of Narcissism, argued, that United States became progressively more individualistic and self-focused country during the 1970s.