What the UCLA revision in 2011 does, as far as I can tell, is expand breadth requirements that keep the major current with expansions within the discipline, while retaining the classic historical focus, including 4 required courses in the history of English literature from Medieval to Modern. One of the interesting opportunities of a class like this is working through events that might be over-familiar to us: for example, Bob Dylan going electric at Newport and being called “Judas” on his British tour in ’65. And it’s also interesting that, by 1990, buying packaged culture—culture was commodity—was a form of criticism that intellectuals didn’t really bother making about the set. All text (including posts, pages, and comments) posted on this blog on or after August 7, 2012, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. One book I like a great deal is Richard Handler, _Critics Against Culture: Anthropological Observers of Mass Society_ (Wisconsin, 2005), which is really a series of essays on various figures from Tocqueville through Sapir, Benedict, Margaret Mead, Jules Henry, and Raymond Williams. Because it seems to be indicative of a way of seeing others that systemically breeds hurt, frustration and anger. If we really admire hard work, we will admire this version of it—the truly hard work of life. Anthropology would lead us to deem a literature anthology as a cultural artifact that tells us something about the rites, rituals, language, and understandings of a certain type… More and more, what they’re getting ranges from drivel to leftist indoctrination. Or maybe those 1990 reactions were about aesthetics—the optics of representation (e.g. You could cover a huge amount of ground trying to unpack why these two events happened, and why they registered as events in the first place. As our primary goal is to stimulate and engage in fruitful and productive discussion, ad hominem attacks (personal or professional), unnecessary insults, and/or mean-spiritedness have no place in the USIH Blog’s Comments section. learn about the spiritual importance of female orgasm and the emergence of "sex radical" bohemia #USIH, Can we interest you in some utopia right about now? Therefore, we reserve the right to remove any comments that contain any of the above and/or are not intended to further the discussion of the topic of the post. And even as low culture–and of course critical theory–push out even the embers and traces of the high, both in the academy and in the real world. If we want to be a nation that reveres history, let’s be a nation that considers every thread of it, celebrating what’s beautiful but also mourning what’s damaged and broken. I do see courses in the genre requirement devoted to the study of the Bible. However…I am well aware how woefully inadequate this list is (even if you fill in the blanks) because it is based on particular people, most of whom wrote stuff down for publication. We don’t want to get involved when people need a hand moving in a positive direction—after all, “those people” need to figure out how to do it themselves, so the lessons stick—but we will fall all over ourselves to get involved when we deem some sort of punishment is in order. I don’t see any courses in the English department devoted to the Rolling Stones. Parents pay a fortune to send their kids to big-name colleges, and they expect strong scholarship in return. Ray– Tags: .USIH Blog, American cultural criticism, course, Errol Morris, Lawrence Levine, Michael Denning, Michael Kammen. Many, perhaps endless possibilities here, of course. One of the issues with this class that I’d also like your views on is the distinction or collision between cultural and intellectual history. We’re quick to write off the futures of so many, and therefore we’re stingy with our hope—we hoard it rather than multiplying and sharing it. I’ll keep thinking here about this question, something I ponder a lot for my introduction to cultural analysis course. I want them to get a clear idea of the difference between seeing music as a site (if you will) for understanding conflicts over taste and as a force that is challenge taste because artists simply disregarded assumed categories. Is Too Much Expertise Bad For Leadership? A companion to Latin American literature and culture Author(s): Sara Castro-Klaren Series: Blackwell Companions To Literature And Culture Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd, Year: 2008 (4MB) The Cambridge Companion to American Realism and Naturalism: From Howells to London (Cambridge Companions to Literature) While such criticism is simply part of the self-consciousness of the culture, the social positions of the critics and the medium they use vary widely. Benetton-style) in the set versus any clear connection to politics? Building up my to-read stack for a long winter inside. Worth reading, though, for many reasons, including some strong critiques of Banes. Intellectual History. America prides itself on always catching that first wave of change. Your course, from what you say, seems to lean more toward notions of culture involving aesthetics and cultural forms of expression, and less toward the broader anthropological form of cultural criticism represented by figures like Ruth Benedict, or the sociological version represented by Daniel Bell’s Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism. If Marx was correct, the path to a more just, free, and decent world would be, ultimately, through socializing & democratizing Amazon's technological efficiencies. Take, for instance, how we tend to use the word “work.” We comprise a culture that’s big on demanding that people work really hard at some things, but not at others. It’s a classic balance between existing practices and new approaches, not a replacement of Shakespeare and Chaucer with postmodern theory. My search for texts that will be mandatory for the class brought me to one of those classic teacher conundrums. Our much discussed Christopher Lasch for the line bt social criticism and cultural criticism (and what is that line anyway?). Cultural criticism or cultural studies is defined in different ways for different purposes. Intellectual History is a nonpartisan educational organization. Jill Johnston’s writing on contemporary dance could be paired with something from Sally Banes’s Greenwich Village 1963. Focusing on the politics, however, often means focusing on the Other—“those people.” Those in various tax brackets (whether rich or poor), those who want to address the economy in a way that doesn’t make sense to you, those who vote for the “other” party. And because I write about movie culture, I want to show a few films to suggest how criticism can move across mediums and can comment on the medium it uses (I like using Errol Morris’s more quirky films). No, this society doesn’t want to really consider an individual’s past or future. Unfortunate. Wouldn’t work, probably, with undergrads. Let’s make it big and inclusive enough for everyone—a whole group of individuals moving forward together. Inside TikTok’s Wild COVID-19 Vaccine as Christian Persecution Meme, The Spiritual Renaissance of Matthew McConaughey, Bianca Juarez Olthoff on the Power of Prayers of ‘Lovingkindness’, Introverts: Quarantine is Not an Excuse for Isolation, Gen Z Is Most Likely to Say Faith Has Been ‘Important’ During the Pandemic, John Maxwell: Your Life Can Be a Great Story, 3 Ways You Can Love Those Who Think Differently in Your Life, Decorating Your Apartment for Christmas on a Budget, You’ve Heard About Mental Health — Let’s Talk About Brain Health, Jon Acuff: Three Questions to Ask When You Hate Your Job. The Great Gatsby as a Criticism of American Society In the novel The Great Gatsby, author F. Scott Fitzgerald criticizes American society through the eyes of his narrator Nick Caraway, as he watches the downfall and pathetic lives of what most consider achievers of the American Dream. Let’s put in overtime listening to and encouraging others, and then let’s value every rich reward that has nothing to do with our bank accounts. Quick thoughts: On jazz/blues, Ralph Ellison, Albert Murray, Amiri Baraka, paired with something from John Gennari’s Blowin Hot and Cool? So we want to be a nation that’s characterized by “hard work,” by changing the course of history with honest sweat and blood? What episodes should punctuate a course on American Culture and Its Critics? However, I do leave room for these moments that exist outside my discrete line of inquiry and the good you suggest has the kind of essays that I could use to punctuate different parts of the course. We say we value hard work, but what we mean by that is we value work that produces sweat, that turns hours of our days into “hard-earned cash,” that keeps the machine going. Fitzgerald’s criticism of American Society is more prominently proven by his Harsh view of America’s materialistic standard … The audience for this blog is filled with cultural critics and those who write about them. We also love to blame people who aren’t doing that kind of hard work—we blame them not just for their own problems, but for our problems too. We are also becoming a culture that’s much quicker to criticize small setbacks and failures than it is to praise small steps forward. American Cultural Criticism I teach a course in the spring entitled American Culture and Its Critics, which will bring together, I hope, the usual diversity of students from anthropology, journalism, English, and political science, in addition to the two sponsoring programs, history and American Studies. I have found Kenneth Silverman’s John Cage biography to be excellent, especially on the 1950s and 1960s. If you look at the offerings for the required period 1500-1700, you will see that Shakespeare is front and central. #books #intellectualhistory #usih, Not too late to join and listen here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_veuaYQdrRtKfFkaTiu8RQA American literature - American literature - Literary and social criticism: Until his death in 1972, Edmund Wilson solidified his reputation as one of America’s most versatile and distinguished men of letters. I guess it’s been all downhill since Eliot introduced the elective system at Harvard way back when. He’s holding up pretty well, that we have elevated “low culture” to intellectual inquiry formerly reserved for the high [not as anthropology but as inherently weighty]–even as the Stones’ successors have lost the trace to the heritage of classical, folk, and the blues. See courses in the set versus any clear connection to politics Denning, Michael Kammen is misread... 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