chapter  7
27 Pages

“Layers of Meaning”: Fan Music Video and the Poetics of Poaching

The art of consumption, Michel de Certeau (1984) tells us, is the "ancient art of 'making do'." De Certeau frequently adopts aesthetic metaphors in his discussion of the practices of everyday life, speaking of consumers as poets, comparing styles of consumption with literary styles, characterizing readers as writers. These analogies, like much of his evocative writing, are rhetorical flourishes. Yet, one can't help but wonder whether there isn't something more substantial to his talk of an aesthetics of appropriation, an art of "making do." De Certeau's emphasis upon the tactical nature of consumption and the nomadic character of the consumer's culture rejects investigation of the aesthetic dimensions of the reader's artifacts; the "marks of consumption" are "invisible" and transient, fluid and uncontainable, not open to direct examination or reproduction and hence, de Certeau's dependence upon metaphorical evocation rather than ethnographic documentation.