WKU POP 201

Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Reappraising The Residual

Posted by amycorysite on February 20, 2017

Today’s reading from Chapter two, pages 85-112 introduced two new concepts of appraisal and residual. Appraisal establishes the monetary value of various commodities in commercial transactions; where as, the residual is the result of a cultural transaction. A point made by a British cultural critic and theorist Raymond Williams on page 95 really brought to my attention the core meaning of chapter two. Williams suggests, “Cultural change occurs at variable rates. As a result, we can be influenced by things- experiences, practices, values, artifacts, institutions – long after they have lost cultural centrality” (95). The influences established in various cultural practices is the value made and based on the appraisal of a given commodity. Once the value of a product has been depleted then the cultural currency loses its remaining value and luster in the eye of the consumer.

The residual culture is one that remains ever fleeting and changing from the eyes of the producer and consumer. Residual media is reliant on the rhetoric of popular opinion found across the evolving fandoms and blogs across the web. Another important factor contributing to the residual culture is the aesthetics shaping the way a product is portrayed to the consumer. Going back to chapter one’s example of retro media, so much of the luster in the value of traditional collectors is favored by the sentimental value the product has for the consumer buy said “retro’ product. Collector culture and retro culture go hand in hand as they coexist to steady the residual transactions between the producer and the consumer.

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