Communications and Cultural Analysis: A Religious View

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Overview

This book explores how culture functions and intersects with religious groups, particularly Christians. It explores the way electronic communications, especially film and television, shape our world of meaning. Using the theories of British thinker Raymond Williams as his framework, Warren focuses on the actual process by which versions of reality are produced, the production of signification. He also draws on the ideas of Paulo Freire pointing out that cultural agency happens when individuals decide to exercise some judgment and control over the kinds of cultural material they will accept or resist.

If culture is a signifying system, says Warren, then religion is too. Contrasting values from the wider culture create dilemmas for those trying to follow a religious life. Choices either mirror the wider culture or reflect a culture of resistance. Warren seeks to help the reader develop the skills of cultural analysis by paying attention to the images that support culture, examining the life structures that support culture, and paying attention to how any particular aspect of culture is produced. Beyond all this, however, the author calls for a stance of resistance to all that violates human dignity and unity—all the aspects of culture that persons with high religious ideals cannot accept.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Warren explores how culture functions and intersects with religious groups, particularly Christians. He examines the way electronic communications, especially film and television, shape meaning. Using the theories of British thinker Raymond Williams as his framework, Warren focuses on the actual process by which versions of reality are produced--the "signification." Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780897892889
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/30/1992
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 182
  • Lexile: 1390L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

MICHAEL WARREN has been Professor for Religious Education and Catechetical Ministry in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at St. John's University, New York City, since 1975.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
1 The Problem of Popular Culture 1
2 What Is Culture? 23
3 Cultural Reproduction Among the Young 43
4 Cultural Production as an Avenue to Cultural Analysis 59
5 A Theory of Images in Cultural Systems 91
6 Metaphoric Images as Signifiers 113
7 Hegemony and the Possibilities of Contestation 127
Bibliography 149
Index 157
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