Reading the Popular

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Routledge, 1989 - Social Science - 228 pages
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'...well-written and accessible. Making the difficult seem easy is Fiske's great talent. No introductory reading list in the field would be complete without a Fiske' - Sociology In Reading the Popular, John Fiske analyzes popular "texts" to reveal both their explicit, implicit (and often opposite) meanings and uses, and the social and political dynamics they reflect. He examines the multitude of meanings lying beneath the cultural artifacts that surround us in shopping malls, popular music and television. Features: * highlights the conflicting responses that cultural phenomenon such as Madonna and the Chicago Sears Tower evoke. * locates popular culture as the point at which people take the goods offered them by industrial capitalism and turn them to their own creative, and even subversive, uses. * refutes the theory that a mass audience mindlessly consumes every product it is offered.

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Understanding Popular Culture
John Fiske
No preview available - 1989
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About the author (1989)

John Fiske was born in Hartford, Connecticut on March 30, 1842. After graduating from Harvard Law School in 1865, he opened a law practice in Boston but soon turned to writing. His career as an author began in 1861, with an article on "Mr. Buckle's Fallacies," published in the National Quarterly Review. Since that time he had been a frequent contributor to American and British periodicals. Early in his career Fiske also achieved popularity as a lecturer on history and in his later life was occupied mostly with that field. In 1869 to 1871 he was University lecturer on philosophy at Harvard, in 1870 an instructor in history there, and in 1872 to 1879, assistant librarian. On resigning as librarian in 1879, he was elected as a member of the board of overseers, and at the end of the six year term, was reelected in 1885. Since 1881 he had lectured annually on American history at Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri, and since 1884 had held a professorship of American history there. He lectured on American history at University College, London, in 1879, and at the Royal institution of Great Britain in 1880. A large part of his life had been devoted to the study of history; but at an early age, inquiries into the nature of human evolution led him to carefully study the doctrine of evolution, and it was of this popularization of European evolutionary theory that the public first knew him. Fiske's historical writings include The Critical Period of American History, 1783-1789, The Beginnings of New England, The American Revolution, The Discovery of America, Old Virginia and Her Neighbors, Dutch and Quaker Colonies in America, The Mississippi Valley in the Civil War, and New France and New England. John Fiske died in 1901.

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