SC2210: Sociology of Pop Culture
Forum Topic 4:

Q: Post modern pop is perhaps best manifested through the cut n paste culture of the DJ who reassembles and reproduces, instead of assembling and producing. If pop culture is essentially in the realm of the postmodern, how does it reflect on the society that consumes postmodernism? Are we looking at the greater acceptance of hybridity, diversity and dissonance on an increasingly more cynically informed populace?

A: Considering how pervasive pop culture has proven to be in our lives now, I would say there is a greater acceptance of this ‘cut-and-paste’ culture. Not necessarily because we like it; rather, it might be due to an ingrained mentality, a notion that this sort of culture is the norm and there is nothing wrong with reproducing (or repackaging) old ideas into new, shinier ones. Indeed, we of the MTV generation have been brought up to believe this is innovation, this is creativity and imagination. We might be wrong – this may actually be the dearth of creativity – but we won’t know that. After all, many hail Andy Warhol’s Campbell Soup Cans as the movement to usher in the new era of pop art, lauding him as an avant-garde artist who satirised our culture of consumerism. Yet, others question his credibility as a true artist, because all he did was portray an old item (one that’s been around for some time) in a new way.

Therefore, I don’t think it’s a greater acceptance of hybridisation in our society (although it could be seen that way too, to a certain extent), but more of the formation of a social axiom. Mix-and-match has become a new way of life for the new generation.

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