The Invention of Culture

Catherine Driscoll

in Modernist Cultural Studies

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print January 2010 | ISBN: 9780813034249
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038421 | DOI:
The Invention of Culture

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This chapter traces the emergence of cultural studies itself from a web of new modes of cultural expertise. It argues that it was the canonization of modernism as something now past that created the gap in which the discipline of cultural studies could appear and be named. Even if we accept that modernism does not break with modernity, the familiarity for us today of the cultural fields and practices at the end of the nineteenth century, compared to those at the beginning, is striking. This chapter suggests that it is in fact an idea of “culture” that forms this continuity: that modernism is the “cultural turn” in modernity. This “turn” began in the Enlightenment but took impetus from the long nineteenth century, drawing on but not reducible to changes to democracy, capitalism, and industry and specially shaped and apparent in what we could called the emergence of “cultural expertise.”

Keywords: cultural studies; modernism; cultural expertise; modernity; culture; cultural turn; Enlightenment

Chapter.  9778 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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