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ERIC Number: EJ907865
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Dec
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0895-4852
Theory with a Capital T: Cultural Studies' Assault on Popular Art
Seaton, James
Academic Questions, v23 n4 p469-480 Dec 2010
Mainstream cultural studies, it seems, is unwilling to take art of any kind seriously, whether popular or classic. Richard Posner is not far wrong in suggesting that the aim of cultural studies "is to knock literature off its pedestal and find vehicles easier than literary works for making political points." To respond fully to literature and art requires the recognition that there is more to life than politics. The best popular art, like the great classics, demands a response beyond what the impoverished vocabulary of cultural studies--transgressive, progressive, reactionary, oppositional, hegemonic, etc.--can offer. In this article, the author examines how cultural studies has distorted the academic study of popular culture. He concludes that it is the division between those who remain true to the traditional humanistic belief that art and literature at their best make available insights into human life that cannot be found elsewhere and those who are certain that literature and art, whether popular or classic, provide nothing that cannot be explained, or explained away, by Theory. (Contains 36 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A