Christmas markets: marketplace icon

Aurelie Brockerhoff, Cristina Galalae

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    6 Citations (Scopus)
    197 Downloads (Pure)


    Christmas markets, originating in Germany in the Middle Ages, have transformed from small-scale, local consumption spaces into a global icon for Christmas consumption behaviours. What has facilitated this rise to a global cultural commodity for experiential consumption? Tracing the history of Christmas markets, we highlight two characteristics that have facilitated their iconicity: openness across historical and cultural contexts and an ability to incorporate a variety of complex meanings that have, at different points, “masked” or enhanced their commercial nature. We argue that the maintenance of Christmas markets as marketplace icons will rely on their ability to continue to adapt to the consumption zeitgeist of the multiple environments where they operate.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)79-90
    Number of pages12
    JournalConsumption Markets & Culture
    Issue number1
    Early online date28 Aug 2020
    Publication statusPublished - 2022

    Bibliographical note

    This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Consumption Markets & Culture on 28/08/2020, available online:

    Copyright © and Moral Rights are retained by the author(s) and/ or other copyright owners. A copy can be downloaded for personal non-commercial research or study, without prior permission or charge. This item cannot be reproduced or quoted extensively from without first obtaining permission in writing from the copyright holder(s). The content must not be changed in any way or sold commercially in any format or medium without the formal permission of the copyright holders.


    • Marketplace icon
    • Christmas market
    • Christmas
    • experiential consumption
    • cultural commodity

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Anthropology
    • Economics and Econometrics
    • Social Psychology
    • Marketing


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