Adorno on Popular Culture (International Library of by Robert W. Witkin

By Robert W. Witkin

Within the a long time given that his loss of life, Adorno’s pondering has misplaced none of its ability to unsettle the settled, and has proved highly influential in social and cultural notion. To most folks, the leisure supplied by means of tv, radio, movie, newspapers, astrology charts and CD avid gamers turns out innocuous sufficient. For Adorno, even though, the tradition that produces them is eventually poisonous in its impression at the social approach. He argues that glossy mass leisure is synthetic less than stipulations that replicate the pursuits of manufacturers and the marketplace, either one of which call for the domination and manipulation of mass consciousness.

Here Robert W. Witkin unpacks Adorno’s notoriously tough critique of pop culture in an enticing and available sort. taking a look first at its grounding in a much broader thought of the totalitarian traits of past due capitalist society, he then is going directly to study, in a few aspect, Adorno’s writing on particular elements of pop culture similar to astrology, radio, movie, tv, well known track and jazz. He concludes along with his personal serious reflections on Adorno’s cultural theory.

This ebook may be crucial analyzing for college kids of the sociology of tradition, of cultural stories, and of severe conception extra more often than not.

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Additional resources for Adorno on Popular Culture (International Library of Sociology)

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The very existence of the individual, in any meaningful sense, is dependent upon her maintaining that non-identity between subject and world that is the antithesis of the culture of adaptation. The concepts of both ‘difference’ and ‘distance’ are key to Adorno’s treatment of the crisis of individuation in the modern world. Only through continuously realizing a difference from and resistance to, society, is the subject able to preserve itself as a moral centre and it is only as a moral centre that the subject is capable of summoning better times.

If it is argued that the talents and creative spirit of the performers and artists, who are the primary producers of the cultural artifacts, somehow guarantee the artistic integrity of what is produced, Adorno and Horkheimer point out that that such primary producers are not only dependent upon the culture industries for work but the competition for such desired jobs and 42 THE DIALECTIC OF ENLIGHTENMENT AND THE RING creative opportunities demands that they orient themselves, in advance, to meeting the principles of production that are key to the culture industry’s operations.

What is presupposed here is that the possession of Culture in this larger sense secures for the individual some degree of autonomy and integrity at the level of agency; it ensures that the individual remains his or her own person (an inner-directed individual) and is not absorbed or subsumed by society and its dominating institutions. Like the ego, with which it is inextricably linked, Culture is a structured and structuring agency, an internalized formation, a precipitate of social relations. This idea of Culture fits with Adorno’s reasoning about the structuration of part–whole relations in music.

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