We can understand holiday consumerism through the lens of Gramsci's hegemony.
We live in a consumer culture, where we’re constantly purchasing more and more products, urged on by mass media and capitalists. Especially around the holidays, there’s a special culture of gift-giving and generosity, where gifts are seen as a way of making merry, of celebration. Therefore, we purchase food and drink in copious amounts, toys, gifts, Christmas trees, decorations, etc.
In addition, institutions such as churches and homeless shelters encourage that sense of holiday generosity as well, encouraging people to buy even more goods to give to those who are less privileged. The dramatic increase in the consumption of goods around the holidays is justified because not only are you celebrating the holiday spirit, but you are also helping the less privileged to join in the festivities as well.
In this way, holiday consumerism can be seen as a type of hegemonic power. The dominant class disguises their profit motive behind the guise of celebration, generosity, making merry – essentially, of being in the holiday spirit. We can therefore interpret the holiday spirit as a very successful fiction maintained by civil society that strongly encourages people to increase consumption during the holidays in order to increase profits.