Saturday, July 16, 2005

finished FRC

Finished reading Klosterman's first book--looking forward to reading the other two. Got to see some themes popping up that he has since re-worked: guilty pleasures shows up in FRC, as does the notion that some of these stars are so open they can be completed by fans in just about anyway. K. uses that argument for Lenny Kravitz, if I remember correctly, the same argument he used a couple of years later for Britany Spears. Not that re-using the argument is a bad thing. Some stars work that way--what McLuhan might call "low intensity stars," while others are specific and filled out--high intensity, I suppose.

K.'s obsession with cool rose to the surface: clearer all the time. He concludes by accepting that he is not cool, but GNR and other metal bands helped him live a virtual reality in which, by association, he got to experience coolness. Hipsters are not cool. Living by total id, it seems, is cool; living without pretension, living in the quest of pure pleasure (booze, drugs, sex) is cool. Liking what you like is cool (somehow "what you like" is natural--doing what comes naturally). This belief in an id and natural pleasures that are somehow outside of socially constructed values seems core to K.'s views. Yet he throws around deconstruction in a couple of places. If K. is the affective critic of the 21st century, the affective critic is not bound by rigorous or consistent terminology: too much of a print-based value.

Or, to take another angle, if learning to write like television (Ulmer's electracy) is learning to write like K., some of the core strategies seem to be:
--include yourself in the story (K. even explains that rock criticism is always about the rock critic)
--reject intellectualism, or at least the kind of the intellectualism that threatens to make you look stupid
--reject anti-intellectualism by making arguments for the intelligence of anti-intellectual art
--eliminate the theory-practice gap: all practice, reckless use of theory

Not sure this list is really going anywhere. Must go look up affective criticism.


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