Constructing a Sociology of the Arts

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Cambridge University Press, Feb 23, 1990 - Art - 252 pages
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Sociologists who study the arts have focused on constructing images of "the artist" as a social type and have, therefore, been criticized by art professionals for a lack of attention to the creative process and individual artistic personalities. In this book, the author examines the diverse theoretical approaches to the study of the arts and develops a sociological approach that acknowledges the importance of aesthetic imperatives and the individual creative process while also assessing the institutional, economic, and political influences on the creation of art. The author focuses on the ways in which people become artists, the institutions in which their careers unfold, the public they need to please, and the institutional and political pressures with which they must contend. Particular subjects covered include the differing relations of art to primitive and industrialized societies; the process by which works are "recreated" at different times for new social purposes; the role of the audience in the realization of artistic experiences; and the reasons for the evolution of artistic styles. This book makes a major contribution to the development of a sociology of the arts at a time when the role of the arts in society has become a subject of increasing concern to social scientists.
  

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Contents

What is art? What is the sociology of art?
1
Why sociologists have neglected the arts and why this is changing
29
Studying the art object sociologically
53
The art object as social process
79
Are artists born or made?
107
Structural support audiences and the social uses of art
136
How the arts change and why
162
Where does the sociology of art stand and where is it going?
192
References
217
Index
237
Copyright

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Page 219 - La constitution du champ de la bande dessinée », Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales, n° 1, janvier 1975, pp.

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About the author (1990)

Zolberg is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at the Graduate Faculty and Eugene Lang College of the New School for Social Research.

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