By Jim McGuigan
Jim McGuigan discusses cultural coverage as a manifestation of cultural politics within the widest experience. Illustrating his case with examples from fresh cultural coverage tasks in Britain, the U.S. and Australia, he appears to be like at:* the increase of marketplace reasoning in arts management* city regeneration and the humanities* historical past tourism* Race, identification and cultural citizenship* Censorship and ethical legislation* The function of computer-mediated verbal exchange in democratic discourse
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Additional resources for Culture and the Public Sphere
These certainties 35 CULTURE AND THE PUBLIC SHERE are fast disappearing. Late 20th-century culture scrambles styles, publics and patterns of taste to an unprecedented degree. Popular forms collide with high art genres and postmodernism celebrates the clash, while the leisure industries re-think their markets for everything from concertgoing to cycling. (1990:32) What we have to consider now is whether Bourdieu’s seminal work on taste, lifestyle and class is outdated by these developments, the possibly actual collapsing of hierarchies and blurring of boundaries, or whether he was onto such developments more or less at their outset and, therefore, enables us to put them into sharper sociological focus than the usual postmodernist reading would allow.
Marx himself operated in both the official public sphere, as a journalist, and also in what Habermas calls ‘the plebeian public sphere’ of radical politics. Habermas is frequently criticised for neglecting the plebeian public sphere, though he did register and name it. P. 9 Thompson traced a radical intellectual tradition and culture in Britain, inspired by the American and French Revolutions, and functioning through reading groups, corresponding societies and publications that were harried and criminalised by the early nineteenthcentury British state.
These collapsing hierarchies and blurring boundaries are held to obliterate older distinctions between, say, art and popular culture. If this really is so, then it follows that the foundational assumptions and functional rationales of much of what passes for public policy in the cultural field, particularly reasons for state subsidy and regulation, are called into question and perhaps rendered redundant. What is the point, it may well be asked, of making ‘good’ culture more widely available or protecting it from the cold winds of the market when it cannot be distinguished satisfactorily from ‘bad’ culture?