What Was Old Is New Again: The History of Nostalgia as a Buying Motive in Consumption Behavior

  • Jana Rutherford College of Business and Technology, University of Texas at Tyler, USA
  • Eric H. Shaw College of Business, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, USA


Purpose – This paper investigates the history of nostalgia from the origin of the concept to its
contemporary use as a buying motive in consumption behavior.

Design/methodology/approach – The literature was reviewed to examine the roots of nostalgia as a
medical disease to its contemporary use in consumer behavior.

Research limitations/implications – The literature indicates that nostalgic feelings can indeed
influence consumption behavior. Future research could be undertaken to provide clarity in answering:
do emotions trigger nostalgia, or does nostalgia trigger emotions, or is nostalgia an emotion itself?


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