In Dancing in Spite of Myself, Lawrence Grossberg—well known as a pioneering figure in cultural studies—has collected essays written over the past twenty years that have also established him as one of the leading theorists of popular culture and, specifically, of rock music. Grossberg offers an original and sophisticated view of the growing power of popular culture and its increasing inseparability from contemporary structures of economic and political power and from our everyday lives. In the course of conducting this exploration into the meaning of "popularity," he investigates the nature of fandom, the social effects of rock music and youth culture, and the possibilities for understanding the history of popular texts and practices. Describing what he calls "the postmodernity of everyday life," Grossberg offers important insights into the relation of pop music to issues of postmodernity and inton the growing power of the new cultural conservatism and its relationship to "the popular." Exploring the limits of existing theories of hegemony in cultural studies, Grossberg reveals the ways in which popular culture is being mobilized in the service of economic and political struggles. In articulating his own critical practice, Grossberg surveys and challenges some of the major assumptions of popular culture studies, including notions of domination and resistance, mainstream and marginality, and authenticity and incorporation. Dancing in Spite of Myself provides an introduction to contemporary theories of popular culture and a clear statement of relationships among theories of the nature of rock music, postmodernity, and conservative hegemony.
Of one and a half million surviving photographs related to Nazi concentration camps, only four depict the actual process of mass killing perpetrated at the gas chambers. Images in Spite of All reveals that these rare photos of Auschwitz, taken clandestinely by one of the Jewish prisoners forced to help carry out the atrocities there, were made as a potent act of resistance.
Available today because they were smuggled out of the camp and into the hands of Polish resistance fighters, the photographs show a group of naked women being herded into the gas chambers and the cremation of corpses that have just been pulled out. Georges Didi-Huberman’s relentless consideration of these harrowing scenes demonstrates how Holocaust testimony can shift from texts and imaginations to irrefutable images that attempt to speak the unspeakable. Including a powerful response to those who have criticized his interest in these images as voyeuristic, Didi-Huberman’s eloquent reflections constitute an invaluable contribution to debates over the representability of the Holocaust and the status of archival photographs in an image-saturated world.
"He was named Jorge, like me, and for this his life hurts me twice." So writes Jorge Volpi in this highly original novel that presents a biographical perspective on the tragic life of the poet and chemist Jorge Cuesta. Cuesta was one of the founders of Los Contemporáneos, an influential twentieth-century literary movement. The poetic voice of Cuesta's verses can be heard throughout, offering insights into the creative and destructive forces and impulses in his work that eventually led to a mental ward—and a shocking suicide at thirty-eight. The fictional "Jorge," as narrator, embarks on an obsessive quest to understand the life of the long-dead poet, with the distance between subject and researcher blurring as he finds himself struggling to understand his own life. It is a brave search for anyone willing to gaze into the mirror of mortality "in spite of the dark silence."
A great American institution; the bane of feminist ideology; a cornucopia of corn—few are neutral about the Miss America Pageant. Live from Atlantic City traces the pageant’s history from its birth as pseudo-event in 1920 through its emergence as American popular culture icon.
A. R. Riverol takes the reader to times and places where no television camera has focused. Drawing upon (and sometimes debating with) primary and secondary sources, the author paints a vivid picture of life in Atlantic City during pageant week—whether that week be in 1944 or 1984. More than just chronicling events, the author also presents two opposing perspectives on the pageant: the pageant as celebration and idealization of American womanhood and the pageant as sexist, exploitative anachronism.