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Negotiating liminality following life transitions: reflexive bricolage and liminal hotspots

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Andrew Lindridge



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


Purpose The paper investigates how consumption linked with life transitions can differ in its potential to bring about ongoing liminality. By examining how consumers can draw on overlapping systems of resources, different ways in which consumers negotiate ongoing liminality following the transition to motherhood are identified. Design/methodology/approach The authors conducted an interpretive, exploratory study using in-depth phenomenological interviews with 23 South Asian mothers living in the UK. The sample consisted of mothers at different stages of motherhood. Findings Following life transitions, consumers may encounter liminal hotspots at the intersection of overlapping systems of resources. The findings examine two liminal hotspots with differing potential to produce ongoing liminality. The study shows how consumers navigate these liminal hotspots in different ways, by accepting, rejecting and amalgamating the resources at hand. Research limitations/implications The research sample could have been more diverse; future research could examine liminal hotspots relating to different minority groups and life transitions. Practical implications Marketers need to examine the different ways in which consumers draw on different systems of resources following life transitions. The paper includes implications for how marketers segment, target and market to ethnic minority consumers. Originality/value Due to increasingly fluid social conditions, there are likely to be growing numbers of consumers who experience ongoing liminality following life transitions. A preliminary framework is presented outlining different ways that consumers negotiate ongoing liminality by drawing on overlapping systems of resources, broadening our understanding of the role that marketplace resources play beyond life transitions.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Kerrane K, Lindridge AM, Dibb S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: European Journal of Marketing

Year: 2021

Volume: 55

Issue: 4

Pages: 1177-1202

Print publication date: 07/04/2021

Online publication date: 03/12/2020

Acceptance date: 14/10/2020

Date deposited: 29/10/2020

ISSN (print): 0309-0566

ISSN (electronic): 1758-7123

Publisher: Emerald Publishing Limited


DOI: 10.1108/EJM-06-2019-0510


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