Reconceptualising risky and harmful consumption through molar and molecular lines: Mobile smartphone sports betting arrangements

Publication Name

Marketing Theory


This paper seeks to extend existing conceptualisations of risky and harmful consumption. Our work draws on a qualitative, rhizomatic study of Australian consumers’ sports betting practices. We utilise Deleuze and Guattari’s related concepts of molar and molecular lines and lines of flight to draw attention to sports betting’s mutually affecting discursive, socio-material and emotional intensities. We examine the ongoing tensions between how people understand themselves as gamblers, the social normalisation of gambling and the parameters of risky betting behaviour. We argue that conceiving gambling consumption through molar and molecular lines challenges the binaries inherent in current framings of risky and harmful consumption. We also consider the possibilities for lines of flight and implications for gambling harm.

Open Access Status

This publication is not available as open access

Funding Number


Funding Sponsor

Australian Research Council



Link to publisher version (DOI)