Date of Award

Fall 9-14-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Film, Video & Digital Imaging

First Advisor

Ethan Tussey

Second Advisor

Jade Petermon

Third Advisor

Arianna Gass


This thesis argues that Kim Kardashian’s product lines present consumers with leisure labor, a category of consumer identity which manifests under the guise of “self-care” and “me-time.” To recontextualize established assumptions of labor and leisure, I will demonstrate the ways that Kim Kardashian’s own work bleeds into her personal life, setting a precedent for fans to be “always on”. This schema is present in the text of the show, The Kardashians, and in the marketing discourse of their products. Fans are encouraged to experience this approach to “self-care” through her brands, specifically SKKN by Kim, Kim Kardashian: Hollywood, and SKIMS. I will thus be analyzing these objects to intervene with popular notions of retail therapy as a break from routine and conclude that it is instead a “self-care” routine which reinforces neoliberal ideals of time and space in which one is always producing surplus value.

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