Eller Marketing Professor’s Research on Holiday Indulgence Featured in Newsmax

Melanie Wallendorf

Melanie Wallendorf, McClelland Professor of Marketing in the Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona, was featured in a Newsmax article on December 18, 2019.

The article, “Being Bad Over the Holidays Feels Good,” notes that the holiday season—from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve—is the only “time of the year you can get away with [indulgence], most of which is enabled both publicly and privately by family members and coworkers, and normalized by the media.”

The article references research by Wallendorf and Eric J. Arnould in which they describe Thanksgiving Day in the U.S. as “collective ritual that celebrates material abundance enacted through feasting.”

The article states, “Describing the consumption theme, [Wallendorf and Arnould] note that the Thanksgiving meal emphasizes quantity over quality, and is replete with themes of stuffing and loading, with dishes like stuffed turkey and mashed potatoes loaded with butter and gravy."

Wallendorf has been with the Eller College since 1981. Her areas of expertise include the sociological aspects of consumer behavior, political ideology and consumption, the socio-cultural shaping of consumers’ uses of space and the development of taste. She is also an expert in ethnic, gender, racial and class differences in consumption and their meanings.