Still preoccupied with 1995: The need to belong and preference for nostalgic products

Katherine E. Loveland, Dirk Smeesters, Naomi Mandel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

188 Scopus citations


This research examines the conditions under which consumers experience an increased preference for nostalgic products, such as previously popular movies, television programs, foods, or automobiles. Specifically, participants for whom the need to belong is an active goal experience a significantly stronger preference for nostalgic products than do participants for whom this is not an active goal. This preference holds both when the need to belong is activated in an ego-threatening manner, such as after being socially ostracized, and when it is activated in a non-ego-threatening manner, such as when the interdependent self is primed. Furthermore, the consumption of nostalgic products, rather than the exposure to or the mere selection of nostalgic products, successfully satiates the need to belong.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)393-408
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Consumer Research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Anthropology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Marketing


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