This thesis has a focus on consumption in Shanghai. I have chosen to focus on the generation that has grown up in the post-Mao era, who is a generation that has lived through vast economic and social change, and are living in a state that promotes modernity, development and consumption. Throughout the thesis I explore different aspects of how they try to create an ideal lifestyle, while trying to fit into the ideals of the state, their parents and their peers. This generation has been used as the vanguard to modernization; they are highly educated and I have large economical expectation. In addition they have a large responsibility to take care of their aging parents. As the states focus has changed from a collective one to one that is more individualistic, I explore how consumption is used in the creation of relationships, and how it is an important aspect of the individual. I also examine the ―middle class‖, how it is created by the state, and how people stratify within the realms of China.