Jack - yes - it is interesting to see not only what other values, but what other ways in which specific kinds of labor gets invisibilized and subsumed. What indeed are the implications of this "global marketplace" and where is the oppression re-shifting to?
During the Beijing Olympics my friends and fellow swimmers bemoaned the lack of underwater coverage of the swimming events. We were surprised that with all the innovations in video there was so little underwater coverage, since the most interesting aspects of swimming take place underwater.
Underwater camera placement for the Olympics and World Championships is nothing new. It is merely part of the whole for broadcasting the race from various angles. What is new, is that one can get access to only the underwater clip of the race in its entirety. And watch it over and over and over……
It is a "whole new view" in that respect.
Although of much less importance to your original post, but important to me, is that these swimmers are not wriggling. They are far more graceful on television at 30 frames per second as opposed to internet video 15 fps.
Crafting, one of the first labors to be industrialized (as textiles), also continued as concealed women’s work (hidden from value-measurement). This contemporary upbeat recovery of artisanal practices seems like a return of the repressed, only now as reminder of the disappearance of use-value. An innovation in forgetting? Or perhaps in new ghosts. Or better yet monsters (which Kalin surrounds himself with). Hybrids of the digital (online, virtual) and the digital (fingers on the hand that crafts). What other values, besides the “new global marketplace” so gleefully promoted by Kalin, emerge from this monstrosity?
The reconfiguration of the economy will no doubt the theme of the next few years, perhaps the next few decades. What is interesting is to see the emphasis on these microcompanies that are artisinal in production. Given that the 20th century was supposed to be about modernization that outstripped the artisinal, it’s interesting to see how social networks have re-enabled this spirit.
In Page 3 (the attached video clip), let’s answer the question, "In doing so, is the film trying to appeal/speak to an urbane, ‘liberal,’ cosmopolitan audience?", with a reserved "Yes".
As the language of the film switches from Hindi to English for the relavatory dialogue quoted by Sreya Mitra, it suggests that the concept - its okay to acknowledge being gay - is still foreign. It may not be urbane, cosmopolitan or even liberal as much as it may be a secret language, affirmation that sits on the edge of Ockham’s razor. It is okay to be gay; but, it is still the love that dare not speak its name at least in our native tongue (and perhaps our native culture). It is like keeping a secret from your grandmother, who still only speaks the mother tongue. That creates the tension in the scene as the clip ends.
I hear you Kathleen. But what do you think might be the campaign’s impact on Western audiences? According to Advertising Age, it has generated enough controversy and attention to be satirized/canonized by Saturday Night Live. High praise indeed and a PR coup to boot:
As you can see, SNL just pushes the concept even further. But who or what is being mocked here? Burger King, indigenous cultures, poverty itself? Like Borat, this text makes me wonder if the Western audience is invited to laugh at the "other" people, with them, or both. In this case, the burger is the bridge—an ambassador, if you will, to negotiate the encounter. For good or ill.
There may be some spark of cross-cultural empathy buried in this commercial, but where it emerges for me, at least, is in wanting to scream "keep that garbage away from them!" every time I see the ad. All I can think of is all of the statistics I’ve read — and honestly, I don’t even know if they’re accurate — about skyrocketing obesity rates and health problems in non-western cultures after the introduction of U.S. fast food franchises. Perhaps I’m getting caught in the myth of the purity of native cultures. Perhaps this is sparking some actual concern for the other. But I’m certain that that hamburger is not going to do anyone any good, and in the end the ad winds up reaffirming my desire to stay as far away from the Whopper as I can, however much these new converts might prefer it to its competitors.
Doug, the discourse of "VORPies" and the like definitely figures into this. The writers of Fire Joe Morgan were especially gifted in their critiques of these attacks against using statistics instead of "gut feelings" to determine a players value. I think part of the reason writers like Bissinger are so reactionary is because they know (at some level, at least), that the stat-heads are right. This isn’t to say that we should shed affect and myth in how we think about sports, but the old guard was a pretty exclusive club, one that the new kids have democratized to a degree.
And this figures into Tim’s comments, too, I think. Because "access" has long been a gatekeeping mechanism, a way of discrediting an opinion that comes from outside the club. This isn’t to say that access isn’t important, but it too often functions rhetorically as a means for disicplining outsiders. I do wish I could’ve found the entire clip, though, because Bissinger really loses his composure at a certain point.
Of the many things you can say about journalists today is that one of the few that actually keep a physical beat are sports journalists. I have seen the entirety of Bissinger’s complaint and while I don’t agree with all that he says about blogging, he was at his best when he noted that bloggers aren’t necessarily in the field in the same way that he and his colleagues are. That said, columnists like Jay Mariotti aren’t necessarily in the field as well and has never written anything as compelling as Friday Night Lights. After viewing this clip it seems to me that this is as much about displaced anger that the entire profession of journalism has been making a 30 year slide away from staffs of people to more of a reliance on electronic and digital feeds that neither demand salaries or healthcare. Just my two cents.
By the way here the entire segment deadspin.com/385770/bissinger-vs-leitch
To underscore your point about the NFL’s conflicted approach to celebration, we might also consider Madden NFL ’09, where users are afforded the opportunity to orchestrate player celebrations that would undoubtedly draw penalties in actual NFL games.
Your post also highlights race as a central (though not always present) feature in the manufacture of the “unruly” and “disrespectful” athlete whose offensive self-aggrandizement violates established norms of sportsmanship. We can also find this construction in Budweiser’s recent ad campaign featuring the anti-authoritarian nihilism of Leon — a fictionalized African-American football star in the mold of Terrell Owens. Leon repeatedly ignores established norms of teamwork and self-sacrifice in favor of a brazenly self-glorifying ethic, to presumably comic effect. You can view an example here (note the comments): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ib4hN9TUcH0