The Cultural Appropriation of Buddha in American Advertisements
Keywords:advertisements, Buddha, cultural principles, appropriation, goods, identity, secular spirituality, social groups
Employing a mixed qualitative and quantitative method, this paper explores why and how Buddha is being reimagined, appropriated, and baked into American advertisements, as well as what underlying values inform such a practice. Building upon previous scholars’ work, we argue that Buddha-branded advertisements cater to all socio-economic classes not just the elite. Buddha is used as a spiritual resource to promote desire, reinforcing rather than challenging consumer culture. Buddha-branded advertisements are shaped by American cultural principles, and in return, the advertisements reshape various facets of identity and everyday American life.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Jiemin Bao, William M. Willis
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.