Tom Ze's Fabrication Defect and the "Esthetics of Plagiarism": A postmodern/postcolonial "Cannibalist Manifesto"

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On his 1998 album Fabrication Defect the Brazilian composer-performer Tom Ze articulates the discourses of postmodernity and postcoloniality. More than simply touching on various aspects of "post-ness," Ze forges from them an updated manifesto premised on Oswald de Andrade's 1928 "Cannibalist Manifesto." The former Tropicalia musician proposes an "Esthetics of Plagiarism" as a way to appropriate and then reformulate the products of Western techno-capitalism. In this discussion, I will argue that the composer reconfigures the modernist and colonial tropes of primitivism and cannibalism in a subversively technophilic postmodern and postcolonial fashion - an oppositionality embodied in the album's "defective android" figure. © 2007 Taylor & Francis.




Rollefson, J. G. (2007). Tom Ze’s Fabrication Defect and the “Esthetics of Plagiarism”: A postmodern/postcolonial “Cannibalist Manifesto.” Popular Music and Society, 30(3), 305–327.

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