Every time Kim Kardashian’s butt popped up on my news feed I was bewildered. Not because of the sheer unnatural size of it but rather was it there in the first place?  What is the need to know what Kylie got for her birthday or how much Beyonce spent on her house? The unrelenting obsession the world has with celebrity lifestyle just befuddled me completely. Until one day, amidst my sociology books, it came to me: the Kardashians are the embodiment of capitalism.

My eyes had just been opened to the vast hegemony capitalism has created and that’s when I finally saw purpose in something that previously seemed meaningless and mundane to my uncultured eyes. The Kardashians symbolise the success of the capitalist system.

They depict a culture of consumerism and luxury which is the apex of human desire. To everyone watching them, they are what the capitalist system portrays as ideal. Capitalism thrives on a consumerist lifestyle, where people are reduced to nothing but buyers, with one purpose: to purchase where we shop, not to collect resources, but shopping was the end itself. With the advent of highly personalised technology people have begun to describe themselves by their possessions. What they buy is what defines them. Consequently, they want to buy luxurious, exclusive and expensive items; in other words, what the Kardashians buy.

Here’s where all the celebrities come in, by broadcasting a flamboyant lifestyle on media, the capitalist system creates a demand for the lifestyle itself. Now since most people can’t gift each other Rolls Royce on their birthdays, they take whatever part of their lifestyle they can. The “Kardashian effect” is a growing phenomenon, people in China sold their organs to afford the latest iPhone, people will spend ridiculous amount of money on lip kits just so they can have their share of the elite lifestyle.

Even though people have been fascinated with the elite lifestyle for centuries, this new obsession has taken it to a whole new level. Now we want to see what they do all day every day, what do they eat, what makeup do they use, how many shoes do they have; we have descended into madness and we have the capitalist system to thank for. Though I’m not sure if the Kardashians are a product of capitalism or merely one of the many profiteers, but one thing is for sure, they both thrive off of each other. The more the people desire what Kendall wore at some party, the more determined they are to reach the same level of income, as them at any cost.

Fortunately for the capitalist, the cost is usually losing sight of inequality and injustice in the world. People start justifying their selfish actions in order to achieve their goal. The pursuit of a lifestyle blinds people to the need of others, placing their motives above others. Thus, rational people are turned into just another cog in the system, all with help of Kim Kardashian’s butt. So the next time you wonder why Kylie’s new eye shades are more important to the media than the global humanitarian crisis, know who to blame.