Diamond Wedding Ring Research Paper

1407 Words 6 Pages
The tradition of beginning an engagement with a diamond ring is largely an American custom that has resulted in the United States becoming one of the largest shareholders of the global diamond jewelry market (Global Diamond Jewelry). The custom dates back to first half of the 1900s when diamonds were introduced as a symbol of undying love due to their lasting value. Although diamond wedding rings serve as an investment and symbol of eternal love, some luxury rings, such as Tiffany and Company, have developed a deeper socioeconomic and cultural significance. In American culture, a Tiffany & Co. engagement ring symbolizes more than unconditional love; it has become an outward symbol of marital status and success. Diamond engagement …show more content…
In his research, Charles Murray, a Professor at the Harvard business school, demonstrated an economic phenomenon which linked income inequality with the radical shift in the American family structure between the lower and middle classes (Kennon). Although it has become a controversial subject, Murray says, “the wedding ring, along with a college degree, has become the primary social and economic class status indicator. Namely, the upper classes are more likely than ever to get married, stay married, and invest an enormous amount of resources including time, energy, and money, into their children” (Keenon). In other words, a wedding ring actually is an indicator of social and economic class. Therefore, Murray’s research heavily supports Thomas Hine’s theory of packaging because it is an outward symbol that a person may be inclined to use to show their personal …show more content…
Russell Shor, a senior industry analyst at the Gemological Institute of America says; “A diamond is a diamond. If you have a stone from a top jeweler with the same grade as the discount place, they’re basically the same thing” (Suddath). However, people continue to purchase expensive diamond Tiffany & Co. engagement rings due to the status of the brand. Consequently, it has become of such importance to own a Tiffany & Co. ring that discount warehouses have begun selling counterfeit rings to compete with the demand. In 2013, Tiffany & Co. was forced to file a multimillion-dollar trademark lawsuit against Costco in order to determine if “Tiffany” has become a term used for all rings that resemble Tiffany & Co.’s signature setting (Suddath). Tiffany & Co. won the suit against Costco Wholesale Corporation in September of 2015 because it was determined that Costco was attempting to gain profit from customers who believed they were obtaining real Tiffany rings at a price that almost anyone could afford (Tiffany & Co.). Despite the supply of counterfeit rings, research conducted by weddingbee.com found that people are still willing to pay a premium on designer rings because they serve as a symbol of

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