Creativity, Capital and Entrepreneurship: The Contemporary Experience of Competition in UK Urban Music

Musgrave, George (2014) Creativity, Capital and Entrepreneurship: The Contemporary Experience of Competition in UK Urban Music. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Abstract

This thesis explores how a competitive marketplace is experienced by creative
labour in the context of UK urban music by employing an experimental
ethnographic research approach. Between 2010-2013, observations, interviews
and textual analysis were conducted with two case-study ‘MCs’, alongside
reflexive autoethnographic analysis of the author’s own career as an
unsigned artist. The findings contribute to the study of competitiveness by
highlighting how it is understood from the perspective of producers, as well as to
a wider body of qualitative academic literature exploring the ways in which
creative labour operates in advanced markets. It is proposed that in an
increasingly competitive context, cultural intermediaries assume a crucial role in
the lives of artists for their ability to act as both a distributor and a distinguisher,
thereby addressing the work of cultural sociologists and creative labour
scholars that debates the role of intermediaries in cultural markets. The methods
of artistic collaboration which creative labour employ to capture the attention of
these intermediaries, demonstrates that competitiveness can engender
collaboration. However, this co-operation often takes place for self-interested
reasons, challenging the oppositional dynamic between self-interest and cooperation.
Furthermore, the ways in which creative labour acquires, maximises
and converts forms of Bourdieu-defined capital today is illusory, as artists can
acquire large amounts of institutionalised cultural capital and thus appear very
successful, while struggling to monetise this success. The thesis thus highlights
how technological changes in the marketplace have altered processes of capital
transubstantiation. Finally, this research proposes that the behavioural responses
to competitiveness by contemporary creative labour can be understood as an
entrepreneurial orientation towards creativity. It contributes to debates about the
impact of entrepreneurship on artists, by suggesting that whilst it can have
damaging emotional implications evidenced in frustration and disillusionment, it
largely helps creativity for the way in which it motivates artists.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Politics, Philosophy, Language and Communication Studies
Depositing User: Mia Reeves
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2015 14:07
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2015 14:07
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/53431
DOI:

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