Materialism, Self-Esteem, Life Satisfaction and Media Usage

by Peter Michael Bak

Does money make us happy and content? And do we, as humans, feel better, when we acquire material possessions? Questions that have been discussed long since have recently experienced a renewed interest. Psychologists and economists found new aspects in the wake of studies about life satisfaction on the one side and the cultivating influence of the mass media – especially television – on the other side. The aim of the present study was to examine to what extent media consumption affects materialistic orientations , and materialistic orientations in turn affect the life satisfaction and self-esteem of a sample of 123 participants. The results confirm – in parts – prior findings on the association between television consumption and materialism. Further analyses show a more refined picture of the relationship between consumption of television, materialism, and self-esteem or life satisfaction, respectively. The results are discussed in the light of prior findings.