August 12th, 2024

John Fiske

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  • What people in capitalist societies have in common is the dominant ideology and the experience of subordination or disempowerment. The economic needs of the cultural industries are thus perfectly in line with the disciplinary and ideological requirements of the existing social order, and all cultural commodities must therefore, to a greater or lesser extent, bear the forces that we can call centralizing, disciplinary, hegemony, massifying, commodifying (the adjectives proliferate almost endlessly).

    Opposing these forces, however, are the cultural needs of the people, this shifting matrix of social allegiances that transgress categories of the individual, or class or gender or race or any category that is stable within the social order. These popular forces transform the cultural commodity into a cultural resource, pluralize the meanings and pleasures it offers, evade or resist its disciplinary efforts, fracture its homogeneity and coherence, raid or poach upon its terrain. All popular culture is a process of struggle, of struggle over the meanings of social experience, of one’s personhood and its relations to the social order and of the texts and commodities of that order. reading relations reproduce and re-enact social relations, so power, resistance, and evasion are necessarily structured into them.
    – John Fiske, Understanding Popular Culture, 1989

    August 12th, 2024

    Henry Jenkins

    For years and years, Denise Howell has had — as one of the random tag lines in the banner at Bag and Baggage — this quote from Henry Jenkins regarding bloggers: “We surf the Web; these guys snowboard it.” I knew who Henry Jenkins was, once, but link rot set in and the link Denise provides goes straight to oblivion.

    But hooray, another blogger to the rescue: Danah Boyd shares the skinny on Henry and his new blog.

    Local angle… Henry was a student of John Fiske.

    August 12th, 2024


    Sorry for the spoilers… click through and follow the links… and,

    Color me clueless… I don’t pay a lot of attention to global subtleties like which multibillionaire has funded what huge international youth orgy on the net. So thanks to Chris Locke for drawing to my attention that it is none other than Mr. Fox-News-His-Own-Self, Rupert Murdoch, who owns MySpace. You thought it was YourSpace? Well, no. It belongs to the oligarch and you can play there. For now.

    August 12th, 2024

    Jimmy Jazz

    Shoot. I am a dj, I am what I play… but I wander in the woodlot. I look at a hickory that took sixteen years to mature. Oaks that Beth and I planted here, twenty feet tall. The hickory has nuts, but the butternuts don’t. The walnuts finally crowding out box elders… Turkey foot grass — big bluestem — and prairie dropseed, and woodland sunflowers… did I finally kill the glade mallow, or did the deer help this summer? I have red oaks fighting with dogwoods, spruces, firs, pines, a lonely hemlock ripening up… cup plant prairie dock compass plant

    You know there’s a walking in the woodlot blues in me mama, just trying to emerge.

    August 12th, 2024

    Saturday Morning Ramble

    via woods lot

    …here’s the essence of what I took away from BlogHer: At the closing session, a woman spoke up and said, “I’m not really a writer, but…” and one of the panelists said, “You have a blog. You’re a writer.” As simple as that. Suddenly, I wasn’t just a mom with a hobby. I wasn’t just someone who gets some small thrill out of playing with words. I’m a writer.
    Glennia Campbell at “Silent i”

    I’m nodding like a Bobblehead. Over thousands of years the form progressed. Incised clay tablets gave way to brush stained papyrus, quill pens, ink and parchment… etchings… movable type, modern paper, manual typewriters, word processors, and now we have moved from these mechanical methods to pixellated output and the electronic mediation of blogging software on networks. But the intent hasn’t changed. People who do this work are writers. And of course some of us, like me, are Bobbleheads.

    Bobbleheads are big in the sports world right now. In the midst of a hundred loss season, the Kansas City Royals’ current marketing ploy to increase attendance involves giving away bobbleheads of baseball legends Frank White, Dick Howser and George Brett. Another baseball legend, triple A ballplayer Rodney McCray, is being honored in Portland tonight with his own Bobblehead marketing give-away. “Usually, it’s the big-league superstars who get their own bobblehead, so I’m very excited,” McCray said.

    Among other notable bush leaguers with their own Bobblehead are Chief Justice John Roberts, whose bobblehead depicts the justice clutching a red box of french fries and a small toad by his feet, and Kim Jong Il.

    In other Portland news, Joshua Gibson continues to share his insights as he plows through one of Dickens’ less memorable pot boilers, Dombey and Son (although as bibliomania — looking for some redeeming value in the work — points out, “the novel is memorable for its depiction of railways”).

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