Gambling Has Long Been A Term Paper

Length: 16 pages Sources: 10 Subject: Psychology Type: Term Paper Paper: #95046762 Related Topics: Lottery, Internet Addiction, Addiction, Consumer Psychology
Excerpt from Term Paper :

As such the stigma that once existed concerning gambling no longer exists. People are therefore more likely to engage in gambling activities and more likely to develop an addiction to gambling. The author further explains that even though there are still social conflicts concerning the implementation and expansion of certain types of gambling such as, video lottery, terminals gambling has become a largely accepted practice (Cosgrave (2010). In addition, gambling is an activity that is mass-marketed by private gambling companies and states as type of leisure activity (Cosgrave (2010). This mass-marketing of gambling sends a message to consumers that gambling is an activity that is accepted and even expected in that particular community. As such people are more likely to participate in such and activity and less likely to feel guilty as a result of such participation.

Cosgrave (2010) further explains that gambling addictions have a great deal to do with consumption and risk. The author explains that legal gambling is a type of consumption in which individuals engaging in the activity are usually motivated by feelings of desire, leisure and pleasure. The author also explains that in classic sociology, the concept of production has been replaced with an emphasis on consumption for attempting to understand the social structure and culture of modern societies. In addition those who have examined modern society have provided formulations of risk to provide a greater understanding of modern social structure.

The author further explains that contrary to the earlier macro formulations developed to describe the risk society, current micro accounts of risk provide investigation of the risk-tak-ing process. This current examination concludes that risk society is an activity that is desirable for the individual engaging in the activity. These risks are described as edge work, safe risk and cultivated risk. The author explains that although risk-taking products are currently available in tourism and leisure markets, analysts believe that the quest of chasing risk is an articulation of social transformation and changing social structure (Gephart 2001; Hannigan 1998, Cosgrave 2010). In addition, Gephart (2001), asserts that "safe risk" serves as a "founda-tional organizational feature of contemporary spectacular society," while Lyng (2005:8) suggests that risk-taking is a "structural principle" of ac-tor and institutional orientations in "risk societies (Gephart 2001, 141)." The author further explains that

"The legalization and expansion of gambling has liberalized a form of risk-taking that was previously held (at least officially) to be problematic for society. In a liberalized environment, indeed within a larger cultural milieu where consumption is central to social organization, participation in risky practices and the consumption of risk products is not so much the issue, but excessive or unsafe involvement entails certain kinds of stigmatization, such as the label of addiction (Cosgrave 2010, 116). "

In this passage the author is explaining that the prevalence of gambling through the legalization of the activity has led to the development of a social norm out of an activity that was once seen as wrong or against the moral code of the same society in which it is now prevalent. This prevalence has caused people within the society to take risks in an activity that was previously forbidden. These risks are not necessarily detrimental. However, when these activities are partaken of in ways that are excessive, addictions can form.

The author also explains that casinos are places that provide consumers with spending experience. Because casinos provide consumers with oppor-tunities for both pleasure and expenditure, their growth in the current legalized gambling environment reflects the transformation of several social norms including cultural values, economic ethics, and social development in the change from industrial to postindustrial consumer citizenries (Cosgrave and Klassen 2001; Miller 1995; Tucker 1991; Cosgrave, 2010).

In other words the legalization of casinos and other forms of gambling has forever changed society. This means that the things that were once shunned, such as gambling, are now viewed as acceptable as a result in changes in economic ethics, cultural values and changes from industrial to postindustrial consumer citizenries. As it pertains to economic ethics, there was a time when state and local governments felt is was beneath them to accept revenues from the practice of gambling. This economic ethic is still part of the landscape of many state and locales. However,...


Cultural values have also changed a great deal and led to the development of social practices that were once despised. For instance, as it related to many aspects of society, certain religious beliefs such as Christianity dictated the activities that were deemed to be socially acceptable. This shift in cultural belief came as a result of living in a world that is more culturally diverse. In addition the development and widespread use of the internet has forever changed the manner in which people interact with one another.

It is in relation to the development of socialization processes in the shift from industrial to postindustrial consumer societies that orientations to risk and risk-taking require consideration. The author asserts that "While the analytical status of risk in rationalized and commercialized gambling venues is subject to debate (Lyng 2005), the consumption of risk is what attracts gamblers. In its mass-marketed expressions, gambling is advertised as a form of "entertainment" and ca-sinos are represented as sites for the consumption of "excitement" (e.g., the slogan for Ontario's Casino Rama, run by the Rama Indian Band is "We deal Excitement Big Time!") (Cosgrave 2010, 116)."

The author further asserts that in situations in which the consumption of risk is provoked by the positive aspects of risk-taking such as the joys of sky-diving, the excitement of gambling, the highs of drug-taking -- risky consumption involves consumption with negative or unattractive risks. The author explains that it is not typically the desire of Gamblers to be addicts. Additionally, sky-divers want to master the intricacies of their activity and escape death, and drug users don't have a desire to overdose (Lyng 2005; Reith 2005; Cosgrave 2010).

The author further explains that the consumption of risk present in gambling, or in other types of edgework, is now an important aspect and driver of con-sumer markets (Cosgrave, 2010). However, consumers are given warnings by those who provide gambling services and by public health agencies that participating in gambling should not become risky or a potentially dangerous expenditure for them (Cosgrave, 2010). Those participating in gambling activities are presented with the message of responsible consumption, which serves as a blueprint for behavior (Lyng 2005; Cosgrave, 2010).

Additionally the author points out that legalized commercial gambling enterprises thoroughly advertise the consumption of risks as a form of entertainment (Cosgrave, 2010). In doing this the manner in which gambling can become a risky consumption is often overlooked (Cosgrave, 2010). The author also explains that "The development of gambling markets requires the stimulation of con-sumption (of risks) as well as the stimulation of knowledge generated to manage the unwanted risks of excessive consumption. This dynamic of knowledge generation contributes to institutional development, raising significant problems for gambling providers and revenue beneficiaries, particularly when gambling markets are stimulated by state-owned gam-bling enterprises (Cosgrave, 2010)."

In addition to all of the other issues discussed that lead to gambling addiction, the advent of internet ambling has played a key role in the development of gambling addiction amongst young people. According to Wong (2010) the first internet site devoted to gambling appeared in 1995. At the current time there are more than 2,000 gambling sites on the internet that compete with one other (American Gaming Association, 2009; Wong 2010). The author further explains that as the number of sites continues to grow throughout the globe, the potential for developing online gambling addictions among adolescents will also grow (Wong 2010). The author also explains that,

"Students are particularly vulnerable to online gambling because they are frequent Internet users who may be attracted by the pop up gambling advertisements, provisionmof trial sites, souvenirs, and the colorful graphics and photos presented with the games (Derevensky & Gupta, 2007). Internet gambling could be more psychologically enticing than traditional gambling owing to increased accessibility, anonymity, and interactivity (Wong, 2010, 365-366)."

Is Gambling pleasure or Addiction

Indeed pleasure and addiction are linked to one another as it pertains to human emotion and human behavior. The research thus far has uncovered that pleasure is actually a physiological phenomenon that occurs in the nervous system. Pleasure can give people a sense of euphoria and peace. As such activities, such as gambling that bring about pleasure must be indulged in with care and concern. Once an individual experiences the pleasure associated with gambling a chemical reaction can occur and they will continue to seek this pleasure even when doing so effects their relationships and their finances. People who…

Sources Used in Documents:


Casey, E.(2008) Women, pleasure and the gambling experience. Ashgate Publishing.

"Compulsive Gambling Addiction and Treatment." Addiction Research. Retrieved April 26, 2010 from:

Cosgrave, James F. And Thomas R. Klassen. 2001. Gambling against the state: The state and the legitimation of gambling. Current Sociology 4(5):1 -- 22.

Cosgrave J.F. (2010). Embedded Addiction: The Social Production of Gambling Knowledge and the Development of Gambling Markets. Canadian Journal of Sociology. Vol 35, No 113-134

Cite this Document:

"Gambling Has Long Been A" (2010, April 26) Retrieved November 29, 2022, from

"Gambling Has Long Been A" 26 April 2010. Web.29 November. 2022. <>

"Gambling Has Long Been A", 26 April 2010, Accessed.29 November. 2022,

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