Not Buying It: My Year Without Shopping

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Simon and Schuster, Feb 27, 2007 - Biography & Autobiography - 288 pages
21 Reviews
Shocked by the commerce in everything from pet cloning to patriotism, frightened by the downward spiral of her finances and that of the trash-strewn earth, Judith Levine enlists her partner, Paul, in a radical experiment: to forgo all but the most necessary purchases for an entire year.

Without consumer goods and experiences, Judith and Paul pursue their careers, nurture relationships, and try to keep their sanity, their identities, and their sense of humor intact. Tracking their progress -- and inevitable lapses -- Levine contemplates need and desire, scarcity and security, consumerism and citizenship. She asks the Big Questions: Can the economy survive without shopping? Are Q-tips necessary?

Not Buying It is the confession of a woman any reader can identify with: someone who can't live without French roast coffee or SmartWool socks but who has had it up to here with overconsumption and its effects on the earth and everyone who dwells there.

For the humor and intelligence of its insights, the refreshment of its skepticism, and the surprises of its conclusions, Not Buying It is sure to be on anyone's list of Necessities.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - flourgirl49 - LibraryThing

The author of this book and her partner decide to cut out all unnecessary spending for a year, which started out as an interesting concept but veered off into too much emphasis on political points ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - justicefortibet - LibraryThing

The subject is intriguing but the book gets repetitive and more than a little whiny. If she truly wanted to commit to not buying why spend so much time and effort trying to get around self imposed restrictions? Looking for loopholes seems to be a bit disingenuous. Read full review

Contents

I
1
II
11
III
25
IV
49
V
68
VI
92
VII
114
VIII
136
IX
153
X
175
XI
192
XII
206
XIII
232
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About the author (2007)

Judith Levine's work explores the ways history, culture, and politics express themselves in intimate life. She is the writer of scores of articles for national magazines and four books, including Harmful to Minors: The Perils of Protecting Children from Sex, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Levine lives in Brooklyn, New York, and Hardwick, Vermont, where she writes the column "Poli Psy," on the public uses of emotion, for the weekly Seven Days.

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