Thursday, February 23, 2006

Do yourself a favor and go pick up the March issue of Harper's and read the article "My Crowd," by Bill Wasik, who "invented" the flash mob. I haven't even finished it yet but it is blowing my mind. They're serializing it here, but you really need to read it all at once. If you don't feel like buying it, email me and I will scan and send you a copy.

Consider the generational cohort that has come to be called the hipsters—i.e., those hundreds of thousands of educated young urbanites with strikingly similar tastes. Have so many self-alleged aesthetes ever been more (in the formulation of Festinger et al.) “submerged in the group”? The hipsters make no pretense to divisions on principle, to forming intellectual or artistic camps; at any given moment, it is the same books, records, films that are judged au courant by all, leading to the curious spectacle of an “alternative” culture more unanimous than the mainstream it ostensibly opposes. What critical impulse does exist among their number merely causes a favorite to be more readily abandoned, as abandoned—whether, Franz Ferdinand, or Jonathan Safran Foer—it inevitably will be.

1 comment:

emily said...

why can't I send you an email from your freakin' blog? I wanted to write to you about the Kheala blog picture and about why out of the list of places you'd rather be, you should really pick vermont, because I'm about to... Also, what are you doing on Friday after work? We should talk on the phone. soon. I'll call you tonight/tomorrow.