Landscapes of Global Capital
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A Price Waterhouse Coopers commercial from 1999 casts the culture of this global economy of efficiency as one with a decidedly postmodern tilt. We interpret this ad as presenting a slightly lighthearted depiction of what happens when commodity culture gets transported to the global stage. The ad presents a curious admixture of cultural signifiers - line-dancing (country-western culture) against the sounds of middle-eastern music in what seems to be a Japanese club setting. PriceWaterhouse Coopers are agnostic about the combinations that may get made - after all, the freedom of the market and freedom of the consumer may lead to some odd combinations. This, the ads tell us, is how global markets work. "Trends change fast," meaning that the grab-bag of combinatorial culture is subject to arbitrary change. Learning how to anticipate such arbitrariness would indeed be a nice talent to have in a global economy of culture.

Male voiceover (British accent): "In the music business, trends change fast. So we're helping the world's largest music companies develop global supply strategies that not only keep them in step with what's happening today, but also anticipate what will happen next."
The voice of the new cultural trend: "Let's polka!"
Male voiceover: "Whatever that is."
Price Waterhouse Coopers
Join us. Together we can change the world."

The jukebox has become the tool for this new culture of pastiche. The result is a kind of cultural transvestism, witness the Japanese coyboy-hat wearing linedancers now ecstatic about the sounds of the Austrian polka.


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Robert Goldman, Stephen Papson, Noah Kersey