What is Cultural Studies?
This is the processes of making and maintaining sense within a certain social and
environmental context. It include ways of acting, interacting with each other. It
involves objects which bring meaning into our lives. i.e Canadian Flag, wedding ring,
social institutions(schools), technology e.t.c [what sets a group of people apart, set
of Values, common knowledge]
The 3 Basic definitions:
- The process of asthetic development (not complete)
Important Questions: Who we are? What we are beyond our culture?
Cultural studies is the study of the relationship between culture and society
What is the relationship between these processes of maintaining & making sense
and the society within which we exist? How does this relate to the society within
which we find ourselves?
Culture relates to everything we do; dress, music, how we use the Internet e.t.c
What is society?
Has somthing to do with relationships we enter into that exist prior to our birth,
over which we have no choice, they tend to be rigid. They are the relationship which
we have to bring meaning into. For example; Mum & Dad is a part of culture value
not a social value, it already makes sense.
Another system we are born into is the economic system.
The meaning which we create & the economic system in which we live in.
One key Point of Cultural Studies: Oh my God, how could they have been so wrong,
do we live in a socialist society today?
The Motivation Behind Cultural studies
- To belong to the upper class, through university education
- Protecting the values of the English upper class from the onslaught by the Western
The Elitist culture has lost it's hold, it no longer necessary. The working class won.
The gap between the Elite & the working class is gone. Class distinctions have more
or less vanished.
Non capitalist societies ran on the assumption of; "if it Works? Don't fix it."
A poet HESIOD titled 'Work and Days' to his brother basically saying, what ever you
do, do not get on a boat. His argument being that, the world we should strive for
exist in the past. The best possible world is in the past, it is the thing that needs to be
maintained & restored.
Progress being a fundamental Capitalist word, 'New' was looked down on.
Capitalism an economic system based on wage labour and pursuit of profit.
Before capitalism there were mostly labour that did not earn money as ways of
making a living; Sustainable farming had being practiced, Slave labour was also not
a paid labour.
Trade open routes of interconnection; wool grown in America then shipped to
England to be made into clothes then sold to India. To make a living people now
work for money. There came the minimum wage (the amount that would keep you
alive till the next day). Earning wages created the need