Lecture 2- Performing in Culture

Lecture 2- Performing in Culture - Lecture for Sept 14:...

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Lecture for Sept 14: Performing in Culture Reading content referenced : Cullen, “Introduction” (1-8); Storey, “Cultural Studies and the Study of Popular Culture: An Introduction” (1-8); Raymond Williams, “Popular” and “Culture” definitions (see Blackboard site). Cullen, “Novel Approaches: The Rise of Popular Culture” (10-32) & “Democratic Vistas: The Emergence of popular Culture, 1800-1860” (33-86). Storey, “Newspapers and Magazines” (87-109) & “The Consumption of Everyday Life” (130- 151). Administrative Notes: Productive and Non-Productive Frustration I found our last class meeting a bit frustrating and I imagine you did as well. There are two types of frustration—the productive and the non-productive. Given the ambiguous nature of “American popular culture” we will all be experiencing some productive frustration which pushes us to rethink what we thought we knew. This class is about learning new material, proving new contexts for familiar material and training you to become scholars of culture. While there will sometimes be class sessions or reading that produce “aha!” moments (moments in which you are aware of learning something really cool or mind-blowing), those will not be the norm. Studying culture is an imprecise affair and will sometimes leave you wondering “what on earth am I learning in this class???” That is productive frustration. Learning culture happens over time, via implementing and applying concepts and methodologies, not through memorization or formulas. Non-productive frustration is when that is ALL you feel/think about the class. Non- productive frustration comes from students being unwilling to talk or professors being unable or unwilling to explain learning objectives for the course overall and for each class session and reading. In the interest of avoiding non-productive frustration for both you and me, we’re both going to have to do a little better. Your responses from last week were, for the most part, very good summaries without much analysis or citation of personal interests. In class and in my comments, I asked you to change that and to come to class prepared with questions you have about ideas, concepts, definitions, and anything else presented in the lectures and readings. To help you do that and to better prepare you for examinations, I have created worksheets. These will be posted online every week in the “course materials” section and provide a list of terms and questions in the readings and lectures. It is not mandatory to complete or turn in these worksheets, but they are meant as a guide to the key concepts and questions related to the study of popular culture. I will choose exam material from these worksheets. So if you know this material, you’ll do
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Lecture 2- Performing in Culture - Lecture for Sept 14:...

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