I can't understand the meaning of ‘desiring object’ and 'calculating object of desire', does 'desiring' and 'calculating' function as a adjective? Here is the paragraph:

The compulsion of abstract desire under capitalism transforms the individual from a desiring object into a calculating object of desire. Consumers do not simply nourish wants for the commodity, they routinely construct the facade of embodiment in order to be desired by the abstracted mass.

cited from Celebrity (Chris Rojek)


a desiring object = an object that desires; someone who has desires

object of desire = something/someone that people desire

Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary defines the adjective "calculating" as

good at planning things so that you have an advantage, without caring about other people

Example: a cold and calculating killer

As far as I understand, the author means that under capitalism people buy expensive and popular goods and services in order to attract the attention of other people and to be desired by people.

Also take a look at the idea of conspicuous consumption.

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