Valentine’s Day is not a festival, Is Valentine’s Day part of globalization?


Globalization has few rituals and festivals to mark its events, the rhythms and transitions of its history.Beyond the economic canon it needs an attic of ‘saints’, symbols to mark the everyday rituals of commodification. We needed something to mark the use of new spares like malls and Baristas, Café days, the industrialization of the New Year card embodied in Archies. A marker in time as an ode to the new spaces. A collective ode to the new individualism, the extension of teens to the age of 35. Submit this requirement to a lazy ad agency and you get Valentines Day.
Valentine’s Day is not a festival. A festival has its roots in a cosmology, it breathes seasons, epics, history. It has a mythical ambience, a religious feeling. Eid, Christmas, Diwali and Rakhi are festivals.
They are even marked by conspicuous consumption but they are not rituals of commoditization. As festivals they transcend the merely economic. Valentine’s Day is not a festival.
Valentine’s Day coalesces around the idea of romance, the solidarity of the greeting card, a sense of the new spaces of individualism like mother’s day or father’s day.
Have a coffee, a few pastries, give a flower and a card to the girl you like. A sense of possibilities made more possible by its economics.There is nothing religious in it except the commoditization. When you celebrate it, don’t look for meaning, just the quantum of the billing.
Globalisation needs non-events it can commodify into a cash nexus. Freedom in this domain depends on the silly, the sentimental, the superficial woven into a spectacle.
The drama of conviviality as embodied in new urban spaces needed a logo. And the minor gods of commodification created Valentine’s Day. Every advertising agency needs a fundamentalist group to work in loose collaboration with it. That is the true structure of Valentine’s Day.
So are Chocolates and roses passé or is Valentine’s Day still about surprise gifts, luxurious dinner, red roses, chocolates, designer jewelry, books and apparel appropriate for the occasion.

You may also like