Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/222768
Title: THE SIGNS OF JUNK: READING NOSTALGIA AND GLAMOUR IN DEMPSEY HILL
Authors: TAN SU YING LAURA
Keywords: Architecture
Design Track
DT
Master
Wong Chong Thai Bobby
2014/2015 Aki DT
Aesthetics
Consumption
Junk
Nostalgia
Simulacra
Issue Date: 20-Nov-2014
Citation: TAN SU YING LAURA (2014-11-20). THE SIGNS OF JUNK: READING NOSTALGIA AND GLAMOUR IN DEMPSEY HILL. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This dissertation seeks to examine the concept of junk and its relation to a world of consumerism. Drawing on Douglas’ and Thompson’s categories of physical matter, junk can be understood as the unwelcome by-product of a capitalist system that favours perpetual freshness and newness. However, even for its position as the ‘abject,’ junk still fascinates us, and we can never really let go of it. My dissertation studies the role of junk in Dempsey Hill. Junk unexpectedly appears in Dempsey Hill as fashionable, hip and chic, having undergone a process of aestheticisation. My dissertation explores what are the steps involved in such a process. Through the lens of several post-structuralist theories, I seek to demonstrate how junk has been simulated, reduced to a sign, before becoming ‘re-motivated’ in a new frame of nostalgia and exclusive consumption forms. This dissertation will also briefly explore these frames of reading Dempsey Hill - how its nostalgic branding is a clever marketing tool against the increasing ‘plebeianisation’ of consumption and the obliteration of historical sites seen elsewhere in Singapore - and how junk is re-configured into these modalities of experiencing Dempsey through a process of simulation. I also investigate the relationship between the concept of junk and nostalgia. Nostalgia-oriented consumption produces history as a commodity, which I contend is subject to the life-span of a typical commodity, eventually becoming degraded. The effect of simulation through the vehicle of nostalgic branding produces a new kind of junk as well.
URI: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/222768
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Restricted)

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