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Re: arsclist record collecting

At 17:25 04/03/2001 -0600, Karl Miller wrote

I would suggest you do some reading on a mild form of autism, I believe it
is called aspergers or asbergers syndrome. .. At any
rate, I have observed these symptoms in record collectors, and in many of
my fellow librarians.

its interesting that you say that. i have only just read an article that suggests that this form of autism is now found in 10 times as many people as it was in the 1950s......
withdrawing into your own little world, being largely unsociable and fixating upon an area of study or a single thing - these symptoms are indeed also characteristic of hard-core collectors. I am however, in no way qualified to compare the two...

For many of the true collectors I have interviewed, collecting seems like a full-time occupation (for those not actually in the business of collecting) and, if they are not yet retired, it will take up as much of their leisure time as is possible.

on 05/03 Patrick Feaster wrote

>An accumulator acquires records
>indiscriminately. A collector seeks out specific items. There are of
>course many gradations between these two extremes, but a "collection" is
>understood as representing some degree of connoisseurship.

naturally i have met numerous people who fall rather more towards the middle of this continuum. I have also met so-called collectors who really show very little knowledge about their collections, aside from knowing that an item was in The Top Ten for example. the collection here does seem more like a status symbol. Whilst I know that all collections, embodying the self and all that, can and do act as signs, there is definitely an element of 'consume for the sake of consuming' - and in this way i guess they are mere accumulators.

When I was younger, there started a craze for DJ-ing. Dance music was big, everyone could get their hands on a set of turntables and become a star.
To be a fully fledged 'member' of this DJ culture, to be serious, you had to spend (and people still do) about £100 per week, acquiring the newest releases (of which there would only be a run of about 200), releases that were either on white labels (and meant that you would pretty much be the only one in your area with it) or were re-released the following week re-mixed. You were either fully committed to participating in this practice or not at all...all or nothing.

i am sure that this kind of panic buying occurred throughout the 50s and 60s with Rock n' Roll, although surely you would have accrued more kudos from being in a band or having a radio show or something (i apologise for my ignorance here). DJ culture - and not even in the original sense - seems to have taken hold....latched onto a consumer society built on ever-changing trends and fashions. To own a collection of 12" is to know music. possession of the carrier seems to provide its owner with the appearance (and self-assumed) knowledge about that genre.

its a funny old world.

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