Culture jamming (name coined in 1984) is a tactic used by many anti-consumerist social movements to disrupt or subvert media culture and its mainstream cultural institutions, including corporate advertising. It purports to "expose the methods of domination" of mass society to foster progressive change.
Historically, anti-consumerism activity introduced by the "AdBan" - "Boycott All Commercial Media" mail art campaigns started via "Media Free Times - periodical Multimedia Random Sampling of Anarchic Communications Art" established in 1972 as a prototype for remote learning with the use of "multi-media periodicals", that are now commonly referred to as "web pages", was a precursor of Adbusters and associated with "The (San Francisco) Bay Area Committee for Open Media and Public Access." a part of the Free Speech Movement. The work contained lectures and the theoretical outlines for use of telecommunications and media for de-schooling and de-design of mainstream education and an alternative, the Virtual Free University, dedicated to media ethics and resistance to indoctrination.
Culture jamming is often seen as a form of subvertising. Many culture jams are intended to expose apparently questionable political assumptions behind commercial culture. Common tactics include re-figuring logos, fashion statements, and product images as a means to challenge the idea of "what's cool" along with assumptions about the personal freedoms of consumption.
Culture jamming sometimes entails transforming mass media to produce ironic or satirical commentary about mass media, using the original medium's communication method. Culture jamming is usually employed in opposition to a perceived appropriation of public space, or as a reaction against social conformity. Prominent examples of culture jamming include the adulteration of billboard advertising by the BLF and Ron English and the street parties and protests organised by Reclaim the Streets. While most culture jamming focuses on subverting or critiquing political or advertising messages, some practitioners focus on a more positive, musically inspired form of jamming that brings together artists, scholars and activists to create new forms of cultural production that transcend rather than merely criticize or negate the status quo.
Other articles related to "culture, culture jamming":
... Dery’s books include The Pyrotechnic Insanitarium American Culture on the Brink and Escape Velocity Cyberculture at the End of the Century, which has been translated into ... the scholarly anthology Flame Wars The Discourse of Cyberculture and wrote the monograph Culture Jamming Hacking, Slashing, and Sniping in the Empire of Signs ... Dery is also known for his 1993 essay Culture Jamming Hacking, Slashing, and Sniping in the Empire of the Signs, in which he popularized the term "culture jamming," a form of "tactical media," or ...
... Rodriguez Gerada continued his direction with the culture jamming group Cicada Corps of Artists ... "In the chapter dedicated to 'Culture Jamming' she reviews some of the major exponents of this direction ... de Gerada is widely recognized as one of the most skilled and creative founders of culture jamming, the practice of parodying advertisements and hijacking billboards in order to drastically alter ...
... The Empire of Mind includes an analysis of culture jamming which provides an example of how Internet-based cultural production subverts dominant symbolic economies and ideologies and ... Culture jamming is presented as one example of the Internet audience's tendency to subvert privately owned meanings ... Strangelove makes no claims about the overall potency or potential of culture jamming ...
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“Without metaphor the handling of general concepts such as culture and civilization becomes impossible, and that of disease and disorder is the obvious one for the case in point. Is not crisis itself a concept we owe to Hippocrates? In the social and cultural domain no metaphor is more apt than the pathological one.”
—Johan Huizinga (18721945)