The Social Construction of Quality: Status Dynamics in the Market for Contemporary Art

Yogev, Tamar (2010) The Social Construction of Quality: Status Dynamics in the Market for Contemporary Art. Socio-Economic Review, 8 (3). pp. 511-536.

Abstract

The association between quality assessment and status attainment is fundamental in the sociology of markets. However, past literature failed to explain status dynamics such as mobility in the status order where highly uncertain goods make quality hard to measure. This paper contributes to the understanding of this relationship by identifying various social mechanisms behind quality evaluation processes. It also explores why certain products are considered to be more valuable than others. The results demonstrate that only through exchange relations and active participation in the marketplace (what I call status actions) can actors affect the social definition of what are perceived as high-quality products. The results also provide evidence of two major market outcomes: conservativism and centralization. The findings improve the understanding of the evolution and dynamics of status in uncertain markets from both micro- and macro-sociology of markets. These processes are illustrated in a study of the art market in Israel.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Economic sociology; Art market; Exchange relations; Uncertainty; Value; Status
Subject(s): Corporate reputation
Centre: Oxford University Centre for Corporate Reputation
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2012 21:15
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2015 14:07
URI: http://eureka.sbs.ox.ac.uk/id/eprint/2655

Actions (login required)

Edit View Edit View