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Sampling Culture in 1980s-1990s Comics, Film, Music and Music Video (NeMLA Convention 2020)

Boston, MA, USA
Organization: Northeast Modern Language Association
Event: NeMLA Convention 2020
Categories: French, Popular Culture, Comics & Graphic Novels, Film, TV, & Media
Event Date: 2020-03-05 to 2020-03-08 Abstract Due: 2019-09-30

This panel provides a moment of scholarly exploration into how, and the extent to which, artists were moving beyond collection and collage in an intentionality and intertextuality which created rich layers of new meaning. The root of this inquiry draws on interactive relationships between audience and musicians, graphic artists and filmmakers who inserted themselves into current cultural trends and the history of artistic expressions by dropping or sampling. It considers such enterprises as a legacy of the punk and electronic movements’ do-it-yourself (DIY) projects of drawing attention to the process of cultural production, as well as an adoption of the DJ’s spontaneous manipulation of pre-existing materials across forms and genres. Cultural openness and inventions in new technologies and formats of the 1980s, such as searchable data bases, samplers, synthesizers, video recorders and editing machines, made space for such re-mixing to flourish like never before. Whether as quoting, signifying, referencing, slicing or borrowing, the sequencing of brief segments of other’s materials into one’s original piece created credibility in assembled recognizable snips. The point of departure for this panel is Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s short film Pas de repos pour Billy Brakko (1984) formed from a collage of stills, Hollywood animation and Marc Caro’s noir comic published in Métal hurlant in 1978. In this respect, pastiche as a homage intrinsic to the identity of the filmmaker will be addressed. Papers on the History of sampling, evolution of related technology, the limits of imitation and adoption of others’ works, specific artists or works, theories on intertextuality, and copy right law are encouraged. As little academic scholarship has been dedicated to this topic, this panel is all the more relevant to studies of plagiarism and post-modern gleaning. For questions, contact panel hair: Dr. Michelle Scatton-Tessier, scattonm@uncw.edu. Abstracted accepted June 15-September 30, 2019. Abstracts submitted to the NeMLA 2020 site: https://www.cfplist.com/nemla/Home/S/18041.



Michelle Scatton-Tessier