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Winnebago NationThe RV in American Culture$
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James Twitchell

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231167789

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231167789.001.0001

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Wheel Escape

Wheel Escape

Consumption Communities on the Road

(p.60) Chapter Three Wheel Escape
Winnebago Nation

James B. Twitchell

Columbia University Press

This chapter discusses consumption communities. A generation ago, Buckminster Fuller, a visionary, suggested that the nomadic life may well become the life of the future—an assumption now echoed by climatologists and futurologists. Social scientists even have a name for these new communities, unsettlements, and a new name for their inhabitants, leisure nomads. Many RVers are members of consumption communities. They are loosely joined when they travel, but become close when camp together. Religion, education, family history, or job are no longer the primary magnets for affiliation; more often it is some material object, some brand, or even some piece of hardware. Almost every brand of RV has an affinity group that not only has an active website and support network, but also holds rallies throughout the year. The affiliation process is powerful because it benefits both manufacturer and consumer.

Keywords:   consumption communities, Buckminster Fuller, nomadic life, unsettlements, leisure nomads, RVers, affinity group, affiliation process

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