Conclusion: The Project of <i>Scrutiny</i>

Christopher Hilliard

in English as a Vocation

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199695171
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949946 | DOI:
Conclusion: The Project of Scrutiny

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The Scrutiny movement's history divides into three periods: roughly, 1930–40, 1940–65, and 1965 onwards. The movement was at its fullest extent in the middle period, and benefited from the distinctive conjuncture of the post-war period, a moment of cultural democratization and the persistence of older hierarchies and standards. As this double helix of democratization and deference unwound, the Scrutiny principle of ‘discrimination’ lost its external sanction. The decline of the movement after the early 1960s is also attributable to the way its cultural critique had been pushed more or less to exhaustion by the time the Birmingham Centre was founded. The conclusion takes stock of the divergent political positions informed by the Scrutiny tradition, and suggests that the movement matters for that diversity as well as for its impact on education and its role in bringing popular culture within the purview of the humanities in Britain.

Keywords: iterary canon; democratization; Marxism; romanticism; Conservatism; Liberalism

Chapter.  4772 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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