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Punk Productions
Unfinished Business
Punk Productions
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Stacy Thompson - Author
SUNY series, INTERRUPTIONS: Border Testimony(ies) and Critical Discourse/s
Price: $95.00 
Hardcover - 228 pages
Release Date: July 2004
ISBN10: 0-7914-6187-4
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-6187-7

Price: $32.95 
Paperback - 228 pages
Release Date: July 2004
ISBN10: 0-7914-6188-2
ISBN13: 978-0-7914-6188-4

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Summary Read First Chapter image missing

A history and social psychology of punk music.

Stacy Thompson's Punk Productions offers a concise history of punk music and combines concepts from Marxism to psychoanalysis to identify the shared desires that punk expresses through its material productions and social relations. Thompson explores all of the major punk scenes in detail, from the early days in New York and England, through California Hardcore and the Riot Grrrls, and thoroughly examines punk record collecting, the history of the Dischord and Lookout! record labels, and 'zines produced to chronicle the various scenes over the years. While most analyses of punk address it in terms of style, Thompson grounds its aesthetics, and particularly its most combative elements, in a materialist theory of punk economics situated within the broader fields of the music industry, the commodity form, and contemporary capitalism. While punk's ultimate goal of abolishing capitalism has not been met, the punk enterprise that stands opposed to the music industry is still flourishing. Punks continue to create aesthetics that cannot be readily commodified or rendered profitable by major record labels, and punks remain committed to transforming consumers into producers, in opposition to the global economy's increasingly rapid shift toward oligopoly and monopoly.

"…offers both a history of punk and a social and material analysis of punk, which is primarily Marxist … The book rests … on the premise of 'punk's ultimate goal of abolishing capitalism' and cites several independent labels as examples of failures in this respect, but also as successes in their opposition to the music industry in general … [This] is a well-researched and thorough book…" — MaximumRockNRoll

"This is a lucidly written, unrivalled account of underground/hardcore punk. Its research into the history of punk rock is admirably thorough and always penetrating. Stacy Thompson's knowledge of every stage of punk's history is remarkable; I know of no one else who possesses similar breadth." — Neil Nehring, author of Popular Music, Gender, and Postmodernism: Anger Is an Energy

"Thompson has written a book that takes punk seriously, which is necessary at a time when the very commodifying practices that Thompson so well describes threaten to turn the whole phenomenon of punk into a mere cartoon." — Bill Martin, author of Avant rock: Experimental music from the Beatles to Björk

Stacy Thompson is Assistant Professor of Critical Theory and Cinema Studies at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire.

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Table of Contents


Abbreviations and Acronyms

Introduction You Are Not What You Own

Punk: A Provisional Definition
A Desiring Punk/Punk Desire

1. Let's Make a Scene

The New York Scene
The English Scene
California Hardcore Scene
Washington, D.C. Hardcore Scene (First Wave Straight Edge)
New York Hardcore Scene (Second Wave Straight Edge)
Riot Grrrl Scene
The Berkeley/Lookout! Pop-Punk Scene

2. Punk Aesthetics and the Poverty of the Commodity

Punk Versus the Commodity
Crass Commodities
A Profane Existence
Aesthetic Profanity
Economic Profanity
From Crass to Profane Existence to CrimethInc. and Beyond

3. Punk Economics and the Shame of Exchangeability

The Punk Commodity
The Two Poles of the Commodity
Collecting Punk/Punk Collecting
Viva la Vinyl
Displaced Labor
The Good Side of the Commodity

4. Market Failure: Punk Economics, Early and Late

Early Punk Economics
Late Punk Economics
Dischord Records and Fugazi
Lookout! Records
The Failure/Success of Dischord, Fugazi, and Lookout!

5. Screening Punk

Punk Cinema?
The Punk Marquee: What's Showing?
At the Bijoux: Rude Boy
In the Mall Cineplex: Fight Club

Epilogue: Beyond Punk

Punk's Not Dead




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