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EMAC 2021 Annual Conference

Ethnocentric Consumer Resistance: British Consumers’ Resistance to Cosmopolitanism in Domestic Brands

Published: May 25, 2021


Charles Lynch, Goldsmiths University; Adele Gruen, Institute of Management Studies, Goldsmiths, University of London


Ethnocentrism, holding one’s group above others, is on the rise, notably in the United Kingdom as exemplified by the newly implemented Brexit. Consequently, brands are on a collision course with many of their domestic customers in their overt advocacy of cosmopolitan values. This research draws on theories of power and resistance to explore how British ethnocentric consumers resist cosmopolitan discourses of domestic brands. Through depth interviews with eight British ethnocentric consumers, the findings reveal three core modes of ethnocentric consumer resistance towards domestic brands: articulating their power, contesting the ads, and unmasking the agents behind the brands. This research contributes to our understanding of consumer resistance by developing the concept of ethnocentric consumer resistance.