The idea of gift exchange is so integral to our daily lives that we often do not think about the significance it plays in our life. The idea of gift exchange is however a complex process of exchanges between people. The exchange of gifts can entail many things such as a gift of acknowledgement, signs of affection, and to even gauge values of respect, reciprocity and moral obligation.
A study done by French anthropologist Marcel Mauss saw that pre-modern societies had focused on this particular idea of gift exchange. Gift exchange for them held a major significance since it represented the amount of respect between the individuals. When giving a gift the gifting end expects a gift back as moral obligation to reciprocate. Having these kinds of relationships of exchanging debt had allowed people to take root into peoples lives in a way more than just being neighbors or friends.
In the current society gift exchange has not changed much in its ability to share the feelings between the gift giver and receiver. Often times the gift itself does not necessarily need to be an expensive purchase to show their appreciation for the person, but rather a gift that understands a person is often more appreciated.