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Columbia University Press
Culture and the Problem of the Disciplines

Culture and the Problem of the Disciplines

by John Carlos Rowe


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Culture and the Problem of the Disciplines

What is the university's role in the production of cultural ideals? With increasingly interdisciplinary approaches being employed in scholarship, can we speak of discrete fields of study?

The results of a collaborative research project by the Critical Theory Institute at the University of California, Irvine, this collection explores the role that scholars and universities play in shaping and defining culture, and how teaching and research institutions are changing in response to international movements and social forces. Investigating the way "high" culture (literature, liberal education) and popular culture (fashion, film) are dealt with in the classroom, these essays show that the "culture wars" of the 1980s and '90s are by no means over; they have simply warped into new, less visible struggles for control of educational funding, curricula, academic "standards," and pedagogical authority.

The essays in this volume range widely. Sacvan Bercovitch defends the literary ideal of culture through his examination of Faulkner's Light in August; Linda Williams explores visual culture through Hitchcock's Psycho; and Leslie Rabine considers the intersections of fashion, race, and gender. J. Hillis Miller details how "cultural studies" might positively change the structure of the university, and Mark Poster challenges historians to develop methods of representing history that are adequate to the complexity of lived experience.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780231112437
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication date: 10/28/1998
Series: A Critical Theory Institute Book Series
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.91(h) x 0.52(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

John Carlos Rowe is professor of English at the University of California, Irvine, where he is a founding member of the Critical Theory Institute.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction, by John Carlos Rowe
2. Foundations of Diversity: Thinking the University in a Time of Multiculturalism, by David Lloyd
3. Literary and Cultural Studies in the Transnational University, by J. Hillis Miller
4. The Function of the Literary in a Time of Cultural Studies, by Sacvan Bercovitch
5. Discipline and Distraction: Psycho, Visual Culture, and Postmodern Cinema, by Linda Williams
6. Fashion and the Racial Construction of Gender, by Linda Williams
7. Accenting Hybridity: Postcolonial Cultural Studies, a Boasian Anthropologist, and I, by James A. Boon
8. Colonialism, Psychoanalysis, and Cultural Criticism: The Problem of Interiorization in the work of Albert Memmi, by Suzanne Gearhart
9. Textual Agents: History at "The End of History", by Mark Poster

What People are Saying About This

Catharine R. Stimpson

"'Culture' and the Problem of the Disciplines is bold, courageous, and important. At once wise and provocative,it shows us how we might think about the humanities -- and how we might act as humanist -- as the world changes around, about, and under us." -- New York University

Gerald Graff

"In 'Culture' andthe Problem of the Disciplines, several of our most prominent critics present an illuminating cross-section of the current 'dissensus' on the shape of the post disciplinary university, including the pros and cons of cultural studies as the new organizaing principle of academic work." -- Pullman Professor of Education, University of Chicago

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