Cultural Studies As A Literary Theory Essay

Cultural Studies As A Literary Theory Essay

Length: 725 words (2.1 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Cultural Studies as a literary theory began with the works… Cultural Studies is an extremely interdisciplinary theory that can encompass many fields, including anthropology, political science, and even philosophy and ethics. It began with the works of Raymond Williams and Richard Hoggart in the late 1950s and early 1960s before being adopted and expanded by Stuart Hall in the late 1960s. This theory moved away from the reading of literature for literature’s sake, and instead begins to regard it both as a product created by a culture and a object influencing that culture. Though the general aims and guidelines of Cultural Studies are hard to pin down, it can broadly be considered a theory that provides new methods for examining the cultural significance and implications of a broader context of texts, moving beyond traditional and canonical texts.
While I appreciate the consideration Cultural Studies pays to marginalized communities and societal practices, it seems that, in its attempt to broadly encompass the ephemeral aspects of culture, Cultural studies itself becomes nebulous and almost impossible to definitively define. Cultural Studies grows and changes when a culture does, which makes it difficult to identify any concrete tenants and practices of the school. If everything is both a contributor to and a creator of culture, then there doesn’t seem to be a place to draw the line between legitimate cultural influences and transient social trends.
I have chosen to complete an analysis of a Republican primary debate as my cultural artifact for examination, rather than a work of literature, because it represents more clearly the social implications that can occasionally be filtered through fiction. A debate is a direct manifes...


... middle of paper ...


...ontributions to American history and acting as though their importance comes primarily through their relationship with a man. When discussing appointments to the Supreme Court, the candidates only entertained the idea of selecting a man with a conservative track record. Planned Parenthood and overall spending on women’s health issues repeatedly came under attack. All of these slights against women—deliberate or subconscious, premeditated or impulsive—accumulate into a cultural practice in American society, and the Republican base being represented in this case, that still considers women less capable than men in the political arena. Women were systematically dismissed, underrepresented, mocked, ignored, and trivialized throughout the night. A Cultural Studies approach would look at this distinct pattern as a representative of underlying cultural symbols and values.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Cultural Studies in the Undergraduate Program Essay

- Cultural Studies in the Undergraduate Program Any discussion of cultural studies must begin with an attempt to define culture. I say attempt because the word 'culture' is so steeped in historical, psychological and political meanings and counter-meanings it has become, in the jargon of literary theory, overdetermined, i.e., so full of meaning it threatens to become meaningless. So instead I will begin with a statement about art which I think goes to the heart of our conceptions of culture. In 1973, Ray B....   [tags: Culture Cultural Pedagogy Education Essays]

Free Essays
6461 words (18.5 pages)

Ethnographic Fieldwork : Cultural Anthropology Essay

- 1). Ethnographic fieldwork is very important to the practice of cultural anthropology. In a 2 to 3 page essay discuss the strengths and weaknesses of this research method. In doing so, please do the following: a) Define ethnographic fieldwork and explain why it is important to cultural anthropology. Ethnographic fieldwork is characteristic of cultural anthropology (Sprandley, 6) . Ethnography entails theory of cultures. Ethnographic fieldwork is important to cultural anthropology to undercover the unknown principles of another way of life so they can enlightened the people through it to understand different way of life and the situation another way of life are living....   [tags: Anthropology, Culture, Cultural anthropology]

Better Essays
1755 words (5 pages)

Archetypal Literary Criticism Essay

- In Literary Criticism, there is an idea that believes that Archetypes make up literature’s meaning. The concept of Archetypes in literature has been the subject of extensive examination in Literary Criticism. “Criticism can be broken down into two broad categories: evaluative and interpretive” (Gardner 1287). The criticism is based on Literary Theory, which is composed of ideas that help interpret, and analyze literature. Everything in literature has a meaning, and many different people came up with strategies to evaluate and interpret it....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]

Better Essays
1611 words (4.6 pages)

Essay about Cultural Study Theory

- Cultural Studies Theory Cultural criticism is a literary theory, which focuses not only on the historical origin of a piece of literature, but on its obvious social, political, and economic influences as well (Meyer 2034). When the culture or context is studied, the motives or tensions, which drive characters’ behaviors, may be accounted for and studied (Crawford). Cultural critics use strategies such as deconstructionism, gender studies, new historicism, and psychology to analyze and evaluate pieces of work (Meyer 2128)....   [tags: essays research papers]

Better Essays
566 words (1.6 pages)

African And African American Studies Essays

- As he continues the journey of relating with his identity to his ideals, his education opens the door to his self-discovery. After attending Bryanston School and Clare College, he then later earned a B.A. and Ph.D. in philosophy at Cambridge (Kwame). This then was just the beginning of his outstanding career. In school he made a lot of connections that he would later be thankful for down the line. Reading literature and other writings from many other philosophers, Appiah’s interests grew for writing literary works like essays, poems and novels so he began to pursue them while also teaching philosophy and African American studies....   [tags: Culture, Human, Africa, African American]

Better Essays
1699 words (4.9 pages)

Structuralism as a Literary Movement Essay

- Structuralism as a literary movement first emerged in the 1960s in the field of linguistics. It expanded to other areas of studies as well by philosophers such as Louis Althusser in Marxist theory, Roland Barthes in literary studies, Jacques Lacan in psychoanalysis, Gerard Genette in narratology, and Claude Levi-Strauss in anthropology. This paper focuses on Strauss’s Structure and Dialectics, Genette’s Five Types of Transtextuality, and Barthes’s The Death of the Author....   [tags: linguistics, philosophers, life, god]

Better Essays
2590 words (7.4 pages)

A Dissent Study on Gender Studies in India Essay

- Studying the difference between sex and gender, Nivedita Menon a feminist critic argues, “The initial move was to use the term sex to refer to the biological differences between men and women, while gender indicated the vast range of cultural meanings attached to that basic difference.” Further she states that this kind of distinction is important for feminism to mark because the subordination of women had been fundamentally justified on the grounds of the biological differences between men and women....   [tags: social issues, sex, gender]

Better Essays
1210 words (3.5 pages)

Master of Arts in Literature and Writing Studies Admissions Essay

- Why did I choose to be a literature and writing student. When I pick up a novel, I cannot hastily read the story. I must set a side plenty of time because I examine how the author has constructed each sentence, which will give me meaning to the story. My task is long and arduous, but the time spent is worthwhile. I will also assume each character’s persona while reading the novel and sometimes imagine I am one of the characters. By doing so, I am no longer reading written words on a page. I am giving life, emotion, and substance to each character....   [tags: Personal Ambition]

Better Essays
711 words (2 pages)

Cultural Expectations of Young, Aristocratic Women Living in the Heian Era

- In Heian era Japan, the way people expected young women to look and act differs strongly from today’s standards. Aristocratic women faced the harshest scrutiny, and those who didn’t live up to the cultural values faced judgement from people. Every action, outfit and sentence uttered faced the criticism of maids, parents, and suitors. Many of these were based on the Buddhist religion, while others stemmed from the popular culture. One is able to better understand what these expectations specifically included in the Lady Who Admired Vermin....   [tags: Heian Era, Japan, Culture, Society]

Better Essays
1301 words (3.7 pages)

Literary Review of Sexuality and Gender in Science Fiction Literature Essay

- Literary Review My argument is that SF literature offers a utopian hope for the future where individual differences are no longer criticized. To conduct this literature review I used multiple information sources to examine issues of gender and sexuality within science fiction literature. None of these sources claim to have produced a conclusive work on the interpretation of gender and sexuality in SF. Some of what I have read seems to be a general overview while some is more focused, but everything clearly references other theorists, studies and texts to back up the arguments made....   [tags: Masculinity, Utopia, Queer Narratives]

Better Essays
3063 words (8.8 pages)