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The Culture Industry Selected Essays On Mass Culture In The 1800s

"Pop Culture" redirects here. For the Madeon song, see Pop Culture (song).

Popular culture or pop culture is generally recognized as a set of practices, beliefs, and objects that are dominant or ubiquitous in a society at a given point in time. Popular culture also encompasses the activities and feelings produced as a result of interaction with these dominant objects. Heavily influenced by mass media, this collection of ideas permeates the everyday lives of the society. Therefore, popular culture has a way of influencing an individual's attitudes towards certain topics.[1] However, there are various ways to define pop culture.[2] Because of this, popular culture is considered to be an empty conceptual category, or something that can be defined in a variety of conflicting ways by different people across different contexts.[3] It is generally defined in contrast to other forms of culture such as mass culture, folk culture, working-class culture, or high culture and also through different theoretical perspectives such as psychoanalysis, structuralism, postmodernism, and more. The most common pop culture categories are: entertainment (such as movies, music, television, and video games), sports, news (as in people/places in news), politics, fashion/clothes, technology, and slang.[4]

Popular culture is sometimes viewed as being trivial and "dumbed down" in order to find consensual acceptance throughout the mainstream. As a result, it comes under heavy criticism from various non-mainstream sources (most notably religious groups and countercultural groups) which deem it superficial, consumerist, sensationalist, or corrupt.[5][6][7][8][9]

History and definitions[edit]

See also: Cultural history

The term "popular culture" was coined in the 19th century or earlier.[10] Traditionally, popular culture was associated with poor education and the lower classes,[11] as opposed to the "official culture" and higher education of the upper classes.[12][13]

The stress in the distinction from "official culture" became more pronounced towards the end of the 19th century,[14][need quotation to verify] a usage that became established by the interbellum period.[15][need quotation to verify]

From the end of World War II, following major cultural and social changes brought by mass media innovations, the meaning of popular culture began to overlap with those of mass culture, media culture, image culture, consumer culture, and culture for mass consumption.[16] Social and cultural changes in the United States were a pioneer in this with respect to other western countries.

The abbreviated form "pop" for popular, as in pop music, dates from the late 1950s.[17] Although terms "pop" and "popular" are in some cases used interchangeably, and their meaning partially overlap, the term "pop" is narrower. Pop is specific of something containing qualities of mass appeal, while "popular" refers to what has gained popularity, regardless of its style.[18][19]

According to author John Storey, there are six definitions of popular culture.[20] The quantitative definition of culture has the problem that much "high culture" (e.g., television dramatizations of Jane Austen) is also "popular." "Pop culture" is also defined as the culture that is "left over" when we have decided what high culture is. However, many works straddle the boundaries, e.g., William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens.

A third definition equates pop culture with "mass culture" and ideas. This is seen as a commercial culture, mass-produced for mass consumption by mass media.[21] From a Western European perspective, this may be compared to American culture.[clarification needed] Alternatively, "pop culture" can be defined as an "authentic" culture of the people, but this can be problematic as there are many ways of defining the "people."[page needed] Storey argued that there is a political dimension to popular culture; neo-Gramscian hegemony theory "... sees popular culture as a site of struggle between the 'resistance' of subordinate groups in society and the forces of 'incorporation' operating in the interests of dominant groups in society." A postmodernist approach to popular culture would "no longer recognize the distinction between high and popular culture."

Storey claims that popular culture emerged from the urbanization of the Industrial Revolution. Studies of Shakespeare (by Weimann, Barber, or Bristol, for example) locate much of the characteristic vitality of his drama in its participation in Renaissance popular culture, while contemporary practitioners like Dario Fo and John McGrath use popular culture in its Gramscian sense that includes ancient folk traditions (the commedia dell'arte for example).[22][23][need quotation to verify]

Popular culture is constantly evolving and occurs uniquely in place and time. It forms currents and eddies, and represents a complex of mutually interdependent perspectives and values that influence society and its institutions in various ways. For example, certain currents of pop culture may originate from, (or diverge into) a subculture, representing perspectives with which the mainstream popular culture has only limited familiarity. Items of popular culture most typically appeal to a broad spectrum of the public. Important contemporary contributions for understanding what popular culture means have been given by the German researcher Ronald Daus, who studies the impact of extra-European cultures in North America, Asia, and especially in Latin America.

Folklore[edit]

Adaptations based on traditional folklore provide a source of popular culture.[24] This early layer of cultural mainstream still persists today, in a form separate from mass-produced popular culture, propagating by word of mouth rather than via mass media, e.g. in the form of jokes or urban legend. With the widespread use of the Internet from the 1990s, the distinction between mass media and word-of-mouth has become blurred.

Although the folkloric element of popular culture engages heavily with the commercial element, the public has its own tastes and it may not always embrace every cultural or subculture item sold. Moreover, beliefs and opinions about the products of commercial culture spread by word-of-mouth, and become modified in the process in the same manner that folklore evolves.

Entertainment[edit]

Television programs[edit]

Main article: Television program

A television program is a segment of content intended for broadcast on over-the-air, cable television, or Internet television, other than a commercial, trailer, or any other segment of content not serving as attraction for viewership.

Television programs may be fictional (as in comedies and dramas), or non-fictional (as in documentary, news, and reality television). It may be topical (as in the case of a localnewscast and some made-for-television movies), or historical (as in the case of many documentaries and fictional series). They could be primarily instructional or educational, or entertaining as is the case in situation comedy and game shows.[citation needed]

Music[edit]

Main article: Popular music

Popular music is music with wide appeal[25][26] that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and styles can be enjoyed and performed by people with little or no musical training.[25] It stands in contrast to both art music[27][28] and traditional or "folk" music. Art music was historically disseminated through the performances of written music, although since the beginning of the recording industry, it is also disseminated through recordings. Traditional music forms such as early blues songs or hymns were passed along orally, or to smaller, local audiences.[27]

Sport[edit]

Main article: Sport

Sport includes all forms of competitivephysical activity or games which,[29] through casual or organised participation, aim to use, maintain or improve physical ability and skills while providing enjoyment to participants, and in some cases, entertainment for spectators.[30]

Corporate branding[edit]

Main article: Corporate branding

Corporate branding refers to the practice of promoting the brand name of a corporate entity, as opposed to specific products or services.[31]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^McGaha, Julie. "Popular Culture & Globalization." Multicultural Education 23.1 (2015): 32-37. SocINDEX with Full Text. Web. 5 Aug. 2016.
  2. ^Strinati, D. (2004). An introduction to theories of popular culture. Routledge.
  3. ^Storey, J. (2018). Cultural theory and popular culture: An introduction. Routledge.
  4. ^"What Is Pop Culture? By Gary West". 
  5. ^Darrell L. Bock and Daniel B. Nixon. "Rebecca's Reads - Darrell L. Bock & Daniel B. Wallace - Dethroning Jesus: Exposing Popular Culture's Quest to Unseat the Biblical Christ". Rebeccasreads.com. Archived from the original on 2009-05-14. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  6. ^"Calvin College: Calvin News". Calvin.edu. 2001-03-15. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  7. ^"7 Things From Pop Culture That Apparently Piss Jesus Off". Cracked.com. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  8. ^"Book Review- Jesus Made in America – Irish Calvinist". Irishcalvinist.com. 2008-10-14. Archived from the original on 2009-02-06. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  9. ^"Japan's increasingly superficial pop culture? | Bateszi Anime Blog". Bateszi.animeuknews.net. 2007-01-18. Archived from the original on 2009-02-28. Retrieved 2009-06-21. 
  10. ^Although the Oxford English Dictionary lists the first use as 1854, it appears in an address by Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi in 1818: Pestalozzi, Johann Heinrich (1818). The Address of Pestalozzi to the British Public.  
  11. ^Per Adam Siljeström (sv), The educational institutions of the United States, their character and organization, J. Chapman, 1853, p. 243: "Influence of European emigration on the state of civilization in the United States: Statistics of popular culture in America". John Morley presented an address On Popular Culture at the Birmingham Town Hall in 1876, dealing with the education of the lower classes.
  12. ^Rabelais and Bakhtin: Popular Culture in "Gargantua and Pantagruel" p.13
  13. ^Rabelais's Radical Farce p.9
  14. ^"Learning is dishonored when she stoops to attract," cited in a section "Popular Culture and True Education" in University extension, Issue 4, The American society for the extension of university teaching, 1894.
  15. ^e.g. "the making of popular culture plays [in post-revolutionary Russian theater]", Huntly Carter, The new spirit in the Russian theatre, 1917-28: And a sketch of the Russian kinema and radio, 1919-28, showing the new communal relationship between the three, Ayer Publishing, 1929, p. 166.
  16. ^"one look at the sheer mass and volume of what we euphemistically call our popular culture suffices", from Winthrop Sargeant, 'In Defense of the High-Brow', an article from LIFE magazine, 11 April 1949, p. 102.
  17. ^The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, volume 15, p.85 entry Pop music
  18. ^Steinem, Gloria. Outs of pop culture, in LIFE magazine, 20 August 1965, p. 73 quotation:

    Pop Culture-although big, mercurial, and slippery to define-is really an umbrella term that covers anything currently in fashion, all or most of whose ingredients are familiar to the public-at-large. The new dances are a perfect example... Pop Art itself may mean little to the average man, but its vocabulary...is always familiar.

  19. ^Bill Lamb, "What Is Pop Music? A Definition", About.com, retrieved 8 March 2012 quotation:

    It is tempting to confuse pop music with popular music. The New Grove Dictionary Of Music and Musicians, the musicologist's ultimate reference resource, identifies popular music as the music since industrialization in the 1800s that is most in line with the tastes and interests of the urban middle class. This would include an extremely wide range of music from vaudeville and minstrel shows to heavy metal. Pop music, on the other hand, has primarily come into usage to describe music that evolved out of the rock 'n roll revolution of the mid-1950s and continues in a definable path to today.

  20. ^John Storey. Cultural Theory and Popular Culture, pp.4-8
  21. ^Sérgio Campos Gonçalves, “Cultura e Sociedade de Consumo: um olhar em retrospecto”, InRevista - Núcleo de Produção Científica em Comunicação – UNAERP (Ribeirão Preto), v. 3, pp. 18-28, 2008, ISSN 1980-6418.
  22. ^Robert Weimann (de), Shakespeare and the Popular Tradition (1967)
  23. ^Robert Shaughnessy, The Cambridge companion to Shakespeare and popular culture (2007) p. 24
  24. ^On the Ambiguity of the Three Wise Monkeys A. W. Smith Folklore, Vol. 104, No. 1/2 (1993), pp. 144-150
  25. ^ abPopular Music. (2015). Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia
  26. ^"Definition of "popular music" | Collins English Dictionary". www.collinsdictionary.com. Retrieved 2015-11-15. 
  27. ^ abArnold, Denis (1983). The New Oxford Companion Music, Volume 1: A-J. Oxford University Press. p. 111. ISBN 0-19-311316-3. 
  28. ^Tagg, Philip (1982). "Analysing popular music: theory, method and practice". Popular Music. doi:10.1017/S0261143000001227. 
  29. ^"Definition of sport". SportAccord. Archived from the original on 28 October 2011. 
  30. ^Council of Europe. "The Europien sport charter". Retrieved 5 March 2012. 
  31. ^Pop Culture: An Overview 

References[edit]

  • Ashby, LeRoy. "The Rising of Popular Culture: A Historiographical Sketch," OAH Magazine of History, 24 (April 2010), 11–14.
  • Ashby, LeRoy. With Amusement for All: A History of American Popular Culture since 1830 (2006).
  • Moritz Baßler (de): Der deutsche Pop-Roman. Die neuen Archivisten (The German Pop-Novel. The new archivists), C.H. Beck, München 2002, ISBN 3-406-47614-7.
  • Bakhtin, M. M. and Michael Holquist, Vadim Liapunov, Kenneth Brostrom (1981). The Dialogic Imagination: Four Essays (University of Texas Press Slavic Series). Ed. Michael Holquist. Trans. Caryl Emerson and Michael Holquist. Austin and London: University of Texas Press.
  • Browne, Ray B. and Pat Browne, eds. The Guide to U.S. Popular Culture (2001), 1010 pages; essays by experts on many topics.
  • Burke, Peter. "Popular Culture Reconsidered," Storia della Storiografia 1990, Issue 17, pp 40–49.
  • Freitag, Sandria B. "Popular Culture in the Rewriting of History: An Essay in Comparative History and Historiography," Journal of Peasant Studies, 1989, Vol. 16 Issue 3, pp 169–198.
  • Gans, Herbert J.Popular Culture and High Culture: an Analysis and Evaluation of Taste. New York: Basic Books, 1974. xii, 179 p. ISBN 0-465-06021-8
  • Gerson, Stéphane. "'A World of Their Own': Searching for Popular Culture in the French Countryside," French Politics, Culture and Society, Summer 2009, Vol. 27 Issue 2, pp 94–110
  • Golby, J. M. and A.W. Purdue, The civilisation of the crowd: popular culture in England, 1750-1900 (1985) online
  • Griffin, Emma. "Popular Culture in Industrializing England," Historical Journal, (2002) 45#3 pp 619–35. online, Historiography
  • Hassabian, Anahid (1999). "Popular", Key Terms in Popular Music and Culture, eds.: Horner, Bruce and Swiss, Thomas. Malden, Massachusetts: Blackwell Publishers. ISBN 0-631-21263-9.
  • Knight, Robert H. The Age of Consent: the Rise of Relativism and the Corruption of Popular Culture. Dallas, Tex.: Spence Publishing Co., 1998. xxiv, 253, [1] p. ISBN 1-890626-05-8
  • Ross, Andrew. No Respect: Intellectuals & Popular Culture. New York: Routledge, 1989. ix, 269 p. ISBN 0-415-90037-9 (pbk.)
  • Seabrook, John. NoBrow : the culture of marketing the marketing of culture, New York: A.A. Knopf, 2000. ISBN 0-375-40504-6.
  • Storey, John (2006). Cultural theory and popular culture. Pearson Education. ISBN 978-0-13-197068-7.
  • Swirski, Peter (2010). Ars Americana Ars Politica: Partisan Expression in Contemporary American Literature and Culture. Montreal, London: McGill-Queen's University Press. ISBN 978-0-7735-3766-8.
  • Swirski, Peter (2005). From Lowbrow to Nobrow. Montreal, London: McGill-Queen's University Press. ISBN 978-0-7735-3019-5.
  • On Religion and Popular Culture

Further reading[edit]

  • Duncan, Barry (1988). Mass Media and Popular Culture. Toronto, Ont.: Harcourt, Brace & Co. Canada. ISBN 0-7747-1262-7
  • Rosenberg, Bernard, and David Manning White, joint. eds. Mass Culture: the Popular Arts in America. [New York]: Free Press of Glencoe, 1957.
  • Cowen, Tyler, “For Some Developing Countries, America’s Popular Culture Is Resistible.” New York Times, 22 February 2007, sec. C, p. 3.
  • Furio, Joanne, “The Significance of MTV and Rap Music in Popular Culture.” The New York Times, 29 December 1991, sec. VI, p. 2.

External links[edit]

"High art" redirects here. For the film, see High Art.

High culture encompasses the cultural products of aesthetic value, which a society collectively esteem as exemplary art.[1] It may also include intellectual works considered to be of supreme philosophical, historical, or literary value, as well as the education which cultivates such aesthetic and intellectual pursuits. In popular usage, the term high culture identifies the culture of an upper class (an aristocracy) or of a status class (the intelligentsia); and also identifies a society’s common repository of broad-range knowledge and tradition (e.g. folk culture) that transcends the social-class system of the society. Sociologically, the term high culture is contrasted with the term low culture, the forms of popular culture characteristic of the less-educated social classes, such as the barbarians, the Philistines, and hoi polloi (the masses).[2]

Concept[edit]

Definition

In European history, high culture was understood as a cultural concept common to the humanities, until the mid-19th century, when Matthew Arnold introduced the term high culture in the book Culture and Anarchy (1869). The Preface defines culture as "the disinterested endeavour after man’s perfection" pursued, obtained, and achieved by effort to "know the best that has been said and thought in the world." Such a literary definition of high culture also comprehends philosophy. Moreover, the philosophy of aesthetics proposed in high culture is a force for moral and political good. Critically, the term "high culture" is contrasted with the terms "popular culture" and "mass culture".[3]

In Notes Towards the Definition of Culture (1948), T. S. Eliot said that high culture and popular culture are necessary and complementary parts of the culture of a society. In The Uses of Literacy (1957), Richard Hoggart presents the sociologic experience of the working-class man and woman in acquiring the cultural literacy, at university, which facilitates social upward mobility. In the U.S., Harold Bloom and F. R. Leavis pursued the definition of high culture, by way of the Western canon of literature.

History of high culture in the West

The high culture of the West originated in the classical-world traditions of intellectual and aesthetic life in Ancient Greece (from c. 8th century BC – AD 147) and Ancient Rome (753 BC – AD 476). In the classical Greco-Roman tradition, the ideal mode of language was published and preserved in works of elevated style (correct grammar, syntax, and diction). Certain forms of language used by authors in valorized epochs were held up in antiquity and the Renaissance as eternal valid models and normative standards of excellence; e.g. the Attic dialect of ancient Greek spoken and written by the playwrights and philosophers of Periclean Athens (fifth century BC); and the form of classical Latin used in the "Golden Age" of Roman culture (c. 70 B.C. - AD 18) represented by such figures as Cicero and Virgil.This form of education was known to the Greeks as παιδεία, which was translated by the Romans into Latin as humanitas[4]'since it reflected a form of education aiming at the refinement of human nature, rather than the acquisition of technical or vocational skills. Indeed, the Greco-Roman world tended to see such manual, commercial, and technical labor as subordinate to purely intellectual activities.[5] From the idea of the "free" man with sufficient leisure to pursue such intellectual and aesthetic refinement, arose the classical distinction between the "liberal" arts which are intellectual and done for their own sake, as against the "servile"or "mechanical" arts which were associated with manual labor and done to earn a living.[6] This implied an association between high culture and the upper classes whose inherited wealth provided such time for intellectual cultivation. The leisured gentleman not weighed down by the necessity of earning a living, was free to devote himself to activities proper to such a "free man"[7] – those deemed to involve true excellence and nobility as opposed to mere utility.

During the Renaissance, the classical intellectual values of the fully rediscovered Græco–Roman culture were the cultural capital of the upper classes(and the aspiring), and aimed at the complete development of human intellectual, aesthetic, and moral faculties. This ideal associated with humanism (a later term derived from the humanities or studia humanitatis), was communicated in Renaissance Italy through institutions such as the Renaissance court schools. Renaissance humanism soon spread through Europe becoming much of the basis of upper class education for centuries. For the socially ambitious man and woman who means to rise in society, The Book of the Courtier (1528), by Baldasare Castiglione, instructs the reader to acquire and possess knowledge of the Græco–Roman Classics, being education integral to the social-persona of the aristocrat. A key contribution of the Renaissance was the elevation of painting and sculpture to a status equal to the liberal arts (hence the visual arts lost for elites any lingering negative association with manual artisanship.) The early Renaissance treatises of Leon Battista Alberti were instrumental in this regard.

The evolution of the concept of high culture initially was defined in educational terms largely as critical study and knowledge of the Græco–Roman arts and humanities which furnished much of the foundation for European cultures and societies. However, aristocratic patronage through most of the modern era was also pivotal to the support and creation of new works of high culture across the range of arts, music, and literature. The subsequent prodigious development of the modern European languages and cultures meant that the modern definition of the term "high culture" embraces not only Greek and Latin texts, but a much broader canon of select literary, philosophical, historical, and scientific books in both ancient and modern languages. Of comparable importance are those works of art and music considered to be of the highest excellence and broadest influence (e.g. the Parthenon, the painting and sculpture of Michelangelo, the music of Mozart, etc). Together these texts and art works constitute the exemplary artifacts representing the high culture of the Western world.

Cultural traditions

In the Western and some East Asian traditions, art that demonstrates the imagination of the artist is accorded the status of high art. In the West this tradition began in Ancient Greece, was reinforced in the Renaissance, and by Romanticism, which eliminated the hierarchy of genres within the fine arts, which was established in the Renaissance. In China there was a distinction between the literati painting by the scholar-officials and the work produced by common artists, working in largely different styles, or the decorative arts such as Chinese porcelain which were produced by unknown craftsmen working in large factories. In both China and the West the distinction was especially clear in landscape painting, where for centuries imaginary views, produced from the imagination of the artist, were considered superior works.

Cultural capital

In socially-stratified Europe and the Americas, a first-hand immersion to the high culture of the West, the Grand Tour of Europe, was a rite of passage that complemented and completed the book education of a gentleman, from the nobility, the aristocracy, and the bourgeoisie, with a worldly perspective of society and civilisation. The post-university tour of the cultural centres of Europe was a social-class benefit of the cultural capital transmitted through the high-status institutions (schools, academies, universities) meant to produce the ideal gentleman of that society.

The European concept of high culture included cultivation of refined etiquette and manners; the education of taste in the fine arts such as sculpture and painting; an appreciation of classical music and opera in its diverse history and myriad forms; knowledge of the humane letters (literae humaniores) represented by the best Greek and Latin authors, and more broadly of the liberal arts traditions (e.g. philosophy, history, drama, rhetoric, and poetry) of Western civilisation, as well as a general acquaintance with important concepts in theology, science, and political thought.

High art[edit]

Much of high culture consists of the appreciation of what is sometimes called "high art". This term is rather broader than Arnold's definition and besides literature includes music, visual arts (especially painting), and traditional forms of the performing arts (including some cinema). The decorative arts would not generally be considered high art.[8]

The cultural products most often regarded as forming part of high culture are most likely to have been produced during periods of high civilization, for which a large, sophisticated and wealthy urban-based society provides a coherent and conscious aesthetic framework, and a large-scale milieu of training, and, for the visual arts, sourcing materials and financing work. Such an environment enables artists, as near as possible, to realize their creative potential with as few as possible practical and technical constraints. Although the Western concept of high culture naturally concentrates on the Graeco-Roman tradition, and its resumption from the Renaissance onwards, such conditions existed in other places at other times.

Art music[edit]

Main article: Art music

Art music (or serious music[9] or erudite music) is an umbrella term used to refer to musical traditions implying advanced structural and theoretical considerations and a written musical tradition.[10] The notion of art music is a frequent and well-defined musicological distinction – musicologist Philip Tagg, for example, refers to art music as one of an "axiomatic triangle consisting of 'folk', 'art' and 'popular' musics". He explains that each of these three is distinguishable from the others according to certain criteria, with high cultural music often performed to an audience whilst folk music would traditionally be more participatory.[11] In this regard, "art music" frequently occurs as a contrasting term to "popular music" and to "traditional" or "folk music".[10][12][13]

Art film[edit]

Main article: Art film

Art film is the result of filmmaking which is typically a serious, independent film aimed at a niche market rather than a mass marketaudience.[14] Film critics and film studies scholars typically define an "art film" using a "...canon of films and those formal qualities that mark them as different from mainstream Hollywood films",[15] which includes, among other elements: a social realism style; an emphasis on the authorial expressivity of the director; and a focus on the thoughts and dreams of characters, rather than presenting a clear, goal-driven story. According to the film scholar David Bordwell, "art cinema itself is a film genre, with its own distinct conventions."[16]

Promotion of high culture[edit]

The term has always been susceptible to attack for elitism, and, in response, many proponents of the concept devoted great efforts to promoting high culture among a wider public than the highly educated bourgeoisie whose natural territory it was supposed to be. There was a drive, beginning in the 19th century, to open museums and concert halls to give the general public access to high culture. Figures such as John Ruskin and Lord Reith of the BBC in Britain, Leon Trotsky and others in Communist Russia, and many others in America and throughout the western world have worked to widen the appeal of elements of high culture such as classical music, art by old masters and the literary classics.

With the widening of access to university education, the effort spread there, and all aspects of high culture became the objects of academic study, which with the exception of the classics had not often been the case until the late 19th century. University liberal arts courses still play an important role in the promotion of the concept of high culture, though often now avoiding the term itself.

Especially in Europe, governments have been prepared to subsidize high culture through the funding of museums, opera and ballet companies, orchestras, cinema, public broadcasting stations such as BBC Radio 3, ARTE and in other ways. Organisations such as the Arts Council of Great Britain, and in most European countries, whole ministries administer these programmes. This includes the subsidy of new works by composers, writers and artists. There are also many private philanthropic sources of funding, which are especially important in the US, where the federally funded Corporation for Public Broadcasting also funds broadcasting. These may be seen as part of the broader concept of official culture, although often a mass audience is not the intended market.

Theories of high culture[edit]

The relations between high culture and mass culture are concerns of cultural studies, media studies, and critical theory, sociology, Postmodernism and Marxist philosophy. In the essay "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" (1936), Walter Benjamin explored the relations of value of the arts (high and mass) when subjected to industrial reproduction. The critical theoreticians Theodor W. Adorno and Antonio Gramsci interpreted the high-art and mass-art cultural relations as an instrument of social control, with which the ruling class maintain their cultural hegemony upon society.[17]

For the Orientalist Ernest Renan and for the rationalist philosopher Ernest Gellner, high culture was conceptually integral to the politics and ideology of nationalism, as a requisite part of a healthy national identity. Gellner expanded the conceptual scope of the phrase in Nations and Nationalism (1983) stating that high art is "a literate, codified culture, which permits context-free communication" among cultures.

In Distinction: A Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste (1979), the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu proposed that æsthetic taste (cultural judgement), derived from social class, in establishing definitions of high art by the practice of human activities such as social etiquette, gastronomy, oenology, military service. That in such activities of aesthetic judgement, the ruling-class person uses social codes unknown to middle- and the lower-class persons in the pursuit and practice activities of taste.

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^Williams, Raymond. Keywords: A Vocabulary of Culture and Society (1983) Rev. Ed. p. 92.
  2. ^Gaye Tuchman, Nina E. Fortin (1989). "ch. 4 The High-Culture Novel". Edging Women Out: Victorian Novelists, Publishers and Social Change. ISBN 978-0-415-03767-9 
  3. ^The Encyclopedia of Philosophy (1967) Volume 1. p. 167.
  4. ^Aulus Gellius. Attic Nights 13:17 http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/e/roman/texts/gellius/13*.html
  5. ^Cicero. De Officiis. 150 – http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A2007.01.0048%3Abook%3D1%3Asection%3D150
  6. ^https://maritain.nd.edu/jmc/etext/art4.htm
  7. ^https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Moral_letters_to_Lucilius/Letter_88
  8. ^Dormer, Peter (ed.), The Culture of Craft, 1997, Manchester University Press, ISBN 0719046181, 9780719046186, google books
  9. ^a b "Music" in Encyclopedia Americana, reprint 1993, p. 647
  10. ^ abDenis Arnold, "Art Music, Art Song", in The New Oxford Companion to Music, Volume 1: A-J, (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1983): 111. ISBN 0-19-311316-3
  11. ^Philip Tagg, "Analysing Popular Music: Theory, Method and Practice", Popular Music 2 (1982): 41.
  12. ^"Music" in Encyclopedia Americana, reprint 1993, p. 647
  13. ^Philip Tagg, "Analysing Popular Music: Theory, Method and Practice", Popular Music 2 (1982): 37–67, here 41–42.
  14. ^Art film definition – Dictionary – MSN Encarta. Archived from the original on 2009-10-31. 
  15. ^Barbara Wilinsky. Sure Seaters: The Emergence of Art House Cinema at Google Books. University of Minnesota, 2001 (Commerce and Mass Culture Series). See also review in 32&pg=PA171&dq=%22canon+of+films+and+those+formal+qualities+that+mark+them+as+different+from+mainstream+Hollywood+films%22 High culture, p. 171, at Google Books, Journal of Popular Film & Television, 2004. Retrieved 2012-01-09.
  16. ^Keith, Barry. Film Genres: From Iconography to Ideology. Wallflower Press: 2007. (page 1)
  17. ^McGregor, Craig (1997). Class in Australia (1 ed.). Ringwood, Victoria: Penguin Books Australia Ltd. p. 301. ISBN 0-14-008227-1.  

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Dancers from the Ballet Rambert, under the auspices of CEMA, a government programme, perform Peter and The Wolf at an aircraft factory in the English Midlands during World War II.

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