Chapter

The Modernity of America and the Practice of Scholarship

Winfried Fluck

in Rethinking American History in a Global Age

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2002 | ISBN: 9780520230576
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520936034 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520230576.003.0015
The Modernity of America and the Practice of Scholarship

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This chapter discusses the concepts of “Americanization” and the humanities. It first shows that the “Americanization” of the humanities is not an effect of cultural imperialism, but of a promise of new possibilities of self-fashioning and self-empowerment. The chapter states that while the volume of scholarship is steadily increasing, that of available knowledge is slowly decreasing. The next section examines the development of the humanities after World War II, and introduces the concepts of humanistic knowledge, meaning production, and the current theory boom in the humanities. Expressive individualism is the topic of the following section, and it is described as a successful end-product of a central project in the humanities. John Guillory's analysis of the humanities, the crisis of the humanities, and cultural modernity are also discussed.

Keywords: Americanization; humanities; cultural imperialism; scholarship; humanistic knowledge; meaning production; expressive individualism; John Guillory; cultural modernity

Chapter.  11470 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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