Popular culture studies is the academic discipline studying popular culture from a critical theory perspective. It is generally considered as a combination of communication studies and cultural studies.
Following the work of the Frankfurt School, popular culture has come to be taken more seriously as a terrain of academic inquiry and has also helped to change the outlooks of more established disciplines. Conceptual barriers between so-called high and low culture have broken down, accompanying an explosion in scholarly interest in popular culture, which encompasses such diverse media as comic books, television, and the Internet. Reevaluation of mass culture in the 1970s and 1980s has revealed significant problems with the traditional view of mass culture as degraded and elite culture as uplifting. Divisions between high and low culture have been increasingly seen as political distinctions rather than defensible aesthetic or intellectual ones.
... A new area in research into popular culture is neuroimaging which identifies the brain areas whereby social information about popularity of an idea or consumer ... change in regard to something due to its being popular with their peer group ...
Famous quotes containing the words studies, popular and/or culture:
“The conduct of a man, who studies philosophy in this careless manner, is more truly sceptical than that of any one, who feeling in himself an inclination to it, is yet so over-whelmd with doubts and scruples, as totally to reject it. A true sceptic will be diffident of his philosophical doubts, as well as of his philosophical conviction; and will never refuse any innocent satisfaction, which offers itself, upon account of either of them.”
—David Hume (17111776)
“Books of natural history aim commonly to be hasty schedules, or inventories of Gods property, by some clerk. They do not in the least teach the divine view of nature, but the popular view, or rather the popular method of studying nature, and make haste to conduct the persevering pupil only into that dilemma where the professors always dwell.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“There has never been in history another such culture as the Western civilization M a culture which has practiced the belief that the physical and social environment of man is subject to rational manipulation and that history is subject to the will and action of man; whereas central to the traditional cultures of the rivals of Western civilization, those of Africa and Asia, is a belief that it is environment that dominates man.”
—Ishmael Reed (b. 1938)