Week 7- Barker, Chapter 14

Cultural studies believes in the importance of social change and focuses itself on power and politics. It was largely influenced by Antonio Gramsci, who developed the idea of hegemony (the ruling class exercizes social authority over subordinate classes through the winning of consent). In cultural politics, there is an emphasis on the power of discourse and language to describe social identities. Thus there is this idea of the politics of difference really being re-formulated as the politics of representation- ethnic identities are therefore understood as constructed through dialogue and language. There is also a public sphere wherein we are able to develop ourselves through this dialogue. Finally, after all of this, many have questioned cultural studies because it seems to take no action and cannot really engage in social and cultural policy.


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