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Globalization and shopping malls in ankara: four cases

Tutalar, Laçin
This study aims to understand the glocal character of shopping malls and consumption patterns in the specific case of Ankara. The shopping mall has been a manifestation of globalization in the changing urban space as well as culture in Ankara since the 1990s. It has marked a significant shift from local dispositions of consumption and retailing, too. The study explores how this shift occurs in Ankara with regard to four aspects: spatial reorganization of urban space via malls; changing consumption patterns and urban public culture; the rise of organized retailing; and, finally, the interplay between the global and the local in commodification processes. The data was collected from semi-structured interviews with twenty-eight salespeople in four malls, namely Beğendik, Arcadium, Ankamall and Optimum. These four cases each display a distinct blend of global currents and local orientations. It was realized that malls are increasingly popular for they signify a much-needed urban space and public life for the socially and culturally differentiating people in the city. Orientations of mall visitors vary regarding age, gender, neighborhood and occupational differences, while urban or rural identities can be also effective in the social practices in different malls. The ways shop employees differentiate themselves change according to their perception of consumers in a certain mall, too.