[iDC] Remix Reader

Eduardo Navas eduardo at navasse.net
Mon Apr 17 21:27:24 EDT 2006

I quote below:

On 4/17/06 5:36 PM, "john sobol" <john at johnsobol.com> wrote:

> It seems to me that after crying 'eurocentric' in our crowded
> auditorium, Paul, that you have name-checked a seriously eurocentric
> canon in your subsequent posts. I have a problem with that, especially
> since I think some of the people on your list (Adorno and Mailer, to
> name but two) are abysmal sources for intelligent critiques of
> African-American cultural practices.

I fear of separating discourses so clear cut.  To say this is "eurocentric"
and here are the examples of the "other" (non-eurocentric) is really not
beneficial.  This falls into the realms of authenticity.
  It sounds dangerously pure.  In the end it provides a comfortable zone of
exercizing a deceptive liberalism that allows "others" to speak their minds.

I believe Adorno and others who may not be friendly to African American
discourse can be important examples in this case because they do bring well
developed concepts to the table when it comes to notions of resistance in
music and culture.  To dismiss all of a person's work based on particular
biases would be like dismissing all of Marx's philosophy because he wrote
"On the Jewish Question."

Perhaps we could consider the different cultural areas that make up the
remix while not desperately separating things into specific categories, but
rather, like Paul did with his recommended books, provide a web of material
that interrelates, complements and shows the limitations and usefulness of

I can also point out that much of the history of DJ Culture in the U.S. is
also the history of Gay culture--this is most true when it comes to Disco
and house.  Should we also bring that cultural discourse into the table?
Should we now have another set of "others" up for explicit display to show
the fine definitions of Western discourse?  Should we maybe combine gay and
African American Culture and ask for gay-non-eurocentric examples to make us
feel better?

I understood Paul's initial comment as a call for understanding the politics
of "difference" that make the remix possible.  It has been traditionally
considered Eurocentric to suspend the politics of difference, while using
that same language to critique it.  So, perhaps it would be productive to
point out that we were not discussing such politics, but talking about other
issues that are completely dependent on them.

  For what is a remix?  A hybrid that cannot be named as one or the "other."
The remix is able to show you the politics that make it possible as it
displays itself.  The remix can only be a remix because one can notice the
parts that make it impure--full of complexities and contradictions. It
offers you a form that is constantly asking for evaluation based on a label
that is always up for grabs because it is not only a "mix" but a "re"-"mix"
of a "mix".  And to understand it one must look into the politics that make
it such.

So bring on good examples that have some color.  Shades are welcomes, but as
Keving Gonzales Day has said...  "Nobody wants to be Gray because it is not

Remember that there is plenty that is hard to name between the center and
the periphery.

Here you start to see some of my position on such politics.


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