Young Millenials in Jakarta Constructing Identity through ‘Pretty Dining’ in Information and Consumer Era

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Eating out has always been part of everyday life among the Young Millenials in big cities in Indonesia. The practice of eating out had been based on the logic of economic efficiencies due the high number of ready-to-eat food sellers or hawkers in informal sector, providing cheaper meal than home-made one. However among the Young Millenials, the logic of economic efficiencies has shifted to a more life-styling reason in their practice of eating out. Eating out is now more of a practice of ‘to see’ and ‘to be seen’ rather than ‘eating’ itself. This paper will highlight the recent trend of ‘Pretty Dining’ (or ‘Makan Cantik’ in
Indonesian language) or in some cases it is called ‘Pretty Coffee’ (or “Ngopi Cantik) among young Jakartans.By focusing on their practice of eating out, this article argues that ‘Pretty Dining’ is a part of the young’s struggle to construct their identity. And as most of them are digital-literate, their use of social media in broadcasting their ‘class identity’ is the most striking characteristic of ‘Pretty Dining’. Based on secondary data (including statistical data) and primary data (through interviews with Jakarta’s Young Millenials as consumers), collected during from 2015 to 2016, the paper stands on the arguments of Zygmunt Bauman that: individual as ‘new consumer’ continually reformulates identity and maintains ambivalent relationship with consumption (1995), and of Jean Baudrillard that: consumption is the language of social differentiation (1974), while intertwining both arguments with the power of social media.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICAS International Convention of Asian Scholars
Place of PublicationChiang Mai
Edition10 th International Conference
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Young Millenials
  • social media
  • consumer society


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