Popular Culture Theory and Methodology: A Basic Introduction

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Popular Press, 2006 - Social Science - 412 pages
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Since its birth in the 1960s, the study of popular culture has come a long way in defining its object, its purpose, and its place in academe. Emerging along the margins of a scholarly establishment that initially dismissed anything popular as unworthy of serious study-trivial, formulaic, easily digestible, escapist-early practitioners of the discipline stubbornly set about creating the theoretical and methodological framework upon which a deeper understanding could be founded. Through seminal essays that document the maturation of the field as it gradually made headway toward legitimacy, Popular Culture Theory and Methodology provides students of popular culture with both the historical context and the critical apparatus required for further growth.     For all its progress, the study of popular culture remains a site of healthy questioning. What exactly is popular culture? How should it be studied? What forces come together in producing, disseminating, and consuming it? Is it always conformist, or has it the power to subvert, refashion, resist, and destabilize the status quo? How does it differ from folk culture, mass culture, commercial culture? Is the line between "high" and "low" merely arbitrary? Do the popular arts have a distinctive aesthetics? This collection offers a wide range of responses to these and similar questions. Edited by Harold E. Hinds, Jr., Marilyn F. Motz, and Angela M. S. Nelson, Popular Culture Theory and Methodology charts some of the key turning points in the "culture wars" and leads us through the central debates in this fast developing discipline. Authors of the more than two dozen studies, several of which are newly published here include John Cawelti, Russel B. Nye, Ray B. Browne, Fred E. H. Schroeder, John Fiske, Lawrence Mintz, David Feldman, Roger Rollin, Harold Schechter, S. Elizabeth Bird, and Harold E. Hinds, Jr. A valuable bibliography completes the volume.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Macro HowtoDoIt Approaches to the Study
3
Popular Culture as the New Humanities
75
Sense
85
Ideological Strategies in
107
Understanding Popular Culture
118
The End of Popular Culture
127
A Holistic Approach to the Study of Popular
163
The Role of the Critic of Popular
231
A Critical Analysis of Roger B Rollins Against
244
A Reply to John
260
Popular Culture
266
The FolklorePopular Culture Continuum
311
The Convergence
344
The Sine Qua Non of Popular Culture
359
How to Make a Key Concept Count
371

The Concept of Formula in the Study of Popular
183
Formalism and Popular Culture
192
An Economic Perspective on Formula in Popular
214
Selective Bibliography of Additional Work
407
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About the author (2006)

Harold E. Hinds, Jr. is professor of history and director of Latin American area studies at the University of Minnesota, Morris. Marilyn F. Motz is associate professor of popular culture at Bowling Green State University. Angela M. S. Nelson is associate professor of popular culture at Bowling Green State University and chair of the department.

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