Reading Beyond the Book

Author: Danielle Fuller
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135080372
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Literary culture has become a form of popular culture over the last fifteen years thanks to the success of televised book clubs, film adaptations, big-box book stores, online bookselling, and face-to-face and online book groups. This volume offers the first critical analysis of mass reading events and the contemporary meanings of reading in the UK, USA, and Canada based on original interviews and surveys with readers and event organizers. The resurgence of book groups has inspired new cultural formations of what the authors call "shared reading." They interrogate the enduring attraction of an old technology for readers, community organizers, and government agencies, exploring the social practices inspired by the sharing of books in public spaces and revealing the complex ideological investments made by readers, cultural workers, institutions, and the mass media in the meanings of reading.

The Digital Literary Sphere

Author: Simone Murray
Publisher: JHU Press
ISBN: 1421426102
Format: PDF
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Reports of the book’s death have been greatly exaggerated. Books are flourishing in the Internet era?widely discussed and reviewed in online readers’ forums and publicized through book trailers and author blog tours. But over the past twenty-five years, digital media platforms have undeniably transformed book culture. Since Amazon’s founding in 1994, the whole way in which books are created, marketed, publicized, sold, reviewed, showcased, consumed, and commented upon has changed dramatically. The digital literary sphere is no mere appendage to the world of print?it is where literary reputations are made, movements are born, and readers passionately engage with their favorite works and authors. In The Digital Literary Sphere, Simone Murray considers the contemporary book world from multiple viewpoints. By examining reader engagement with the online personas of Margaret Atwood, John Green, Gary Shteyngart, David Foster Wallace, Karl Ove Knausgaard, and even Jonathan Franzen, among others, Murray reveals the dynamic interrelationship of print and digital technologies. Drawing on approaches from literary studies, media and cultural studies, book history, cultural policy, and the digital humanities, this book asks: What is the significance of authors communicating directly to readers via social media? How does digital media reframe the "live" author-reader encounter? And does the growing army of reader-reviewers signal an overdue democratizing of literary culture or the atomizing of cultural authority? In exploring these questions, The Digital Literary Sphere takes stock of epochal changes in the book industry while probing books’ and digital media’s complex contemporary coexistence.

A Cultural Approach to Emotional Disorders

Author: E. Deidre Pribram
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317700651
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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In her latest contribution to the growing field of emotion studies, Deidre Pribram makes a compelling argument for why culturalist approaches to the study of emotional "disorders" continue to be eschewed, even as the sociocultural and historical study of mental illness flourishes. The author ties this phenomenon to a tension between two fundamentally different approaches to emotion: an individualist approach, which regards emotions as the property of the individual, whether biologically or psychologically, and a culturalist approach, which regards emotions as collective, social processes with distinctive histories and meanings that work to produce particularized subjects. While she links a strong preference for the individualist construct in Western culture to the rise of the psychological and psychiatric disciplines at the turn of the twentieth century, Pribram also engages with a diverse set of case studies tied to psychological and aesthetic discourses on emotions. These range from Van Gogh’s status as emotionally disordered to the public, emotional aesthetics of 19th century melodrama to the diagnostic categories of the DSMs and the fear of "globalizing" emotional disorders in the 21st century. This genuinely interdisciplinary approach makes for a text with potential application in a wide range of disciplines within cultural studies, including sociocultural and historical analysis of psychiatry and psychology, gender theory, subject and identity theory, popular culture studies, and history and theory of the arts.

Materiality and Popular Culture

Author: Anna Malinowska
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1317219139
Format: PDF, Docs
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This book critically approaches contemporary meanings of materiality and discuses ways in which we understand, experience, and engage with objects through popular culture in our private, social and professional lives. Appropriating Arjun Appadurai’s famous phrase: "the social life of things", with which he inspired scholars to take material culture more seriously and, as a result, treat it as an important and revealing area of cultural studies, the book explores the relationship between material culture and popular practices, and points to the impact they have exerted on our co-existence with material worlds in the conditions of late modernity.

A Social History of Contemporary Democratic Media

Author: Jesse Drew
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 113511756X
Format: PDF, Docs
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The last few decades have helped dispel the myth that media should remain driven by high-end professionals and market share. This book puts forward the concept of "communications from below" in contrast to the "globalization from above" that characterizes many new developments in international organization and media practices. By examining the social and technological roots that influence current media evolution, Drew allows readers to understand not only the Youtubes and Facebooks of today, but to anticipate the trajectory of the technologies to come. Beginning with a look at the inherent weaknesses of the U.S. broadcasting model of mass media, Drew outlines the early 1960s and 1970s experiments in grassroots media, where artists and activists began to re-engineer electronic technologies to target local communities and underserved audiences. From these local projects emerged national and international communications projects, creating production models, social networks and citizen expectations that would challenge traditional means of electronic media and cultural production. Drew’s perspective puts the social and cultural use of the user at the center, not the particular media form. Thus the structure of the book focuses on the local, the national, and the global desire for communications, regardless of the means.

LGBTQs Media and Culture in Europe

Author: Alexander Dhoest
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317233123
Format: PDF
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Media matter, particularly to social minorities like lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. Rather than one homogenised idea of the ‘global gay’, what we find today is a range of historically and culturally specific expressions of gender and sexuality, which are reflected and explored across an ever increasing range of media outlets. This collection zooms in on a number of facets of this kaleidoscope, each chapter discussing the intersection of a particular European context and a particular medium with its affordances and limitations. While traditional mass media form the starting point of this book, the primary focus is on digital media such as SNS (Social Networking Sites), blogs and online dating sites. All contributions are based on recent, original empirical research, using a plethora of qualitative methods to offer a holistic view on the ways media matter to particular LGBTQ individuals and communities. Together the chapters cover the diversity of European countries and regions, of LGBTQ communities, and of the contemporary media ecology. Resisting the urge to extrapolate, they argue for specificity, contextualisation and a provincialized understanding of the connections between media, culture, gender and sexuality.

The Borders of Subculture

Author: Alexander Dhoest
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317525841
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This book aims to revisit the notion of subculture for the 21st century, reinterpreting it and extending its scope. On the one hand, the notion of resistance is redefined and applied to contemporary practices of cultural production and entrepreneurship. On the other hand, contributors reconsider the connection of subcultures to everyday culture, exploring more mainstream forms of cultural production and consumption across a wider range of social groups. As a consequence, this book extends the scope to look beyond the white, male, adolescent, urban cultures identified with earlier subcultural studies. Contributors also examine fusions and crossovers between Western and non-Western cultural practices.

The Creative Underground

Author: Paul Clements
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1317501292
Format: PDF, Docs
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Paul Clements champions the creative underground and expressions of difference through visionary avant-garde and resistant ideas. This is represented by an admixture of utopian literature, manifestos and lifestyles which challenge normality and attempt to reinvent society, as practiced for example, by radicals in bohemian enclaves or youth subcultures. He showcases a range of 'art' and participatory cultural practices that are examined sociopolitically and historically, employing key theoretical ideas which highlight their contribution to aesthetic thinking, political ideology, and public discourse. A reevaluation of the arts and progressive modernism can reinvigorate culture through active leisure and post-work possibilities beyond materialism and its constraints, thereby presenting alternatives to established understandings and everyday cultural processes. The book teases out the difficult relationship between the individual, culture and society especially in relation to autonomy and marginality, while arguing that the creative underground is crucial for a better world, as it offers enchantment, vitality and hope.

The Adaptation Industry

Author: Simone Murray
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136660240
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Adaptation constitutes the driving force of contemporary culture, with stories adapted across an array of media formats. However, adaptation studies has been concerned almost exclusively with textual analysis, in particular with compare-and-contrast studies of individual novel and film pairings. This has left almost completely unexamined crucial questions of how adaptations come to be made, what are the industries with the greatest stake in making them, and who the decision-makers are in the adaptation process. The Adaptation Industry re-imagines adaptation not as an abstract process, but as a material industry. It presents the adaptation industry as a cultural economy of six interlocking institutions, stakeholders and decision-makers all engaged in the actual business of adapting texts: authors; agents; publishers; book prize committees; scriptwriters; and screen producers and distributors. Through trading in intellectual property rights to cultural works, these six nodal points in the adaptation network are tightly interlinked, with success for one party potentially auguring for success in other spheres. But marked rivalries between these institutional forces also exist, with competition characterizing every aspect of the adaptation process. This book constructs an overdue sociology of contemporary literary adaptation, never losing sight of the material and institutional dimensions of this powerful process.

Asexualities

Author: Karli June Cerankowski
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134692463
Format: PDF, Docs
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What is so radical about not having sex? To answer this question, this collection of essays explores the feminist and queer politics of asexuality. Asexuality is predominantly understood as an orientation describing people who do not experience sexual attraction. In this multidisciplinary volume, the authors expand this definition of asexuality to account for the complexities of gender, race, disability, and medical discourse. Together, these essays challenge the ways in which we imagine gender and sexuality in relation to desire and sexual practice. Asexualities provides a critical reevaluation of even the most radical queer theorizations of sexuality. Going beyond a call for acceptance of asexuality as a legitimate and valid sexual orientation, the authors offer a critical examination of many of the most fundamental ways in which we categorize and index sexualities, desires, bodies, and practices. As the first book-length collection of critical essays ever produced on the topic of asexuality, this book serves as a foundational text in a growing field of study. It also aims to reshape the directions of feminist and queer studies, and to radically alter popular conceptions of sex and desire. Including units addressing theories of asexual orientation; the politics of asexuality; asexuality in media culture; masculinity and asexuality; health, disability, and medicalization; and asexual literary theory, Asexualities will be of interest to scholars and students in sexuality, gender, sociology, cultural studies, disability studies, and media culture.