The value in de-emphasizing structure in liquidity

Giana M. Eckhardt*, Fleura Bardhi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


In the set of commentaries on liquidity entitled “The continuing significance of social structure in liquid modernity,” three sets of authors set out to examine the relationship between liquidity and structure, value, and distinction. In doing so, they attempt to marry theories which argue against sociologist Zygmunt Bauman’s central thesis that societal structures are shifting with his seminal construct of liquidity, an exercise that has mixed results. All three sets of authors have engaged with Bauman’s conceptualization of liquid modernity as well as our conceptualization of liquid consumption and its consequences. In this response to the commentaries, we clarify how we understand Bauman and how we have used his ideas in our theorizing, engage with the three sets of author’s advocacy for emphasizing the continuing relevance of structure within liquidity, and, finally, sum up how de-emphasizing structure has and can continue to lead to important new insights in marketing theory.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)573-580
Number of pages8
JournalMarketing Theory
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Bauman
  • consumption
  • liquid consumption
  • liquid modernity
  • marketing


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