Halloween : from compuction to consumption

It’s Halloween soon, a festivity originally from the British Islands, first exported to North America, the continental Europeans were watching from afar the last few years, and that is now celebrated all over Europe and in other parts of the world, and has become an economic phenomenon.

However, it is initially an austere religious tradition. Some make its origin back to the Celtic new year, the Samhain, meaning “summer end” in Gaelic, a celebration of the end of the harvest time, and entry in the dark period. Anyway, in the eighth century, the Church chose the same period of emerging darkness to recall the Saints, the martyrs, the dead people, and somehow the resurrection of the flesh, that can be found in the modern commercial holidays through zombie costumes and candy.

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The Christian celebration is divided in two days, All Hallows’ Day, on November 1st, dedicated to Saints and martyrs, and All Souls’ Day, November 2nd, recalling the faithful departed Christians. The vigil of the first day, All Hollow’s Even, is what is often abbreviated as Halloween, and turned from being an austere vigil dedicated to remember Saints and other dead people, to be an occasion of fun for young and not so young people.

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The custom of trick and treating was initiated in Ireland and Scotland centuries ago, when children and poor people were singing from door to door, asking for food, and receiving amongst other things the “soul cake”, which in time has been transformed into candy, and an additional source of income for multinational companies and retailers.

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You will find bellow a small gallery of products from well known brands, created to be sold before Halloween. First, of course some candy:

Not only candy companies wanted to join the part. You can find also Halloween beers, or Halloween commercials for beers:

Halloween paper or ceramic dishes:

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Of course Halloween decoration, on top of Jack’o pumpkins:

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And obviously Halloween corners in stores, where you will find all Halloween items, including costumes and even lingerie.

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Happy Halloween… and Happy consuming !


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