Cultural Comm - While the search for authenticity among...

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While the search for authenticity among consumers has perhaps never been stronger, others embrace an alternative set of pop cultural pursuits that devalue, deconstruct, or otherwise challenge such explorations as tradition-bound, humorless, or else pretentious. For example, in the quest for meaning in popular culture, many postmodern consumers seek out exemplars of hybridity in which otherwise disparate cultures are melded together in a self-conscious manner to generate new possibilities for creative expression. In many ways the entire history of American popular music in the twentieth century was marked by attempts at synthesis and fusion. Blues and jazz developed as a mélange of African and European musical traditions, while early rock ’n roll pioneers developed the genre by blending together urban blues with country music. Such experiments in hybridity are also evident in Bob Dylan’s mid-1960s development of electric folk-rock (which signaled his supposed lack of authenticity among more traditional folk music adherents, including the aforementioned Pete Seeger); Miles Davis’s forays into free jazz, funk, and psychedelic rock on albums like Bitches Brew and On the Corner ; the appropriation of classical music techniques in 1970s and
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