Effect of popular culture on art thesis

By Sre Ratha

Different cultures have different views and often see the world differently from others. America has a very diverse and unique culture. We are the melting pot of the universe. One example of how art relates to the American culture is churches and religion. Inside of churches there are many different forms of art in the paintings, the statues, the architecture, and cathedral ceilings. Another example of how art relates to American culture is the way Americans dress in comparison to other cultures.

In conclusion this paper, I given my personal definition of art. I elaborated on how art and culture relate. Next, I discussed art and the American culture and I gave two examples.

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The presence of well-known corporate symbols and mass-produced goods in modern art reflected the commercialization of popular culture. This was known as Pop Art. It is heavily influenced by technology. In some form of way technology has allowed people to gain more knowledge on general topics.

Common sources of imagery include advertisements, consumer product packaging, celebrity photographs, and comic strips. Both of these movements had their own unique qualities however, I found Pop Art very intriguing and wanted to look further into the movement.

Popular culture is good for you. And we have that now, for the most part. Discover great essay examples and research papers for your assignments. There are many ways to define popular culture. Many individuals have grappled with the question what is popular culture. And how to critically analyze and deconstruct the meanings. Moreover, the opening text of the Folio is a preface written by Ben Jonson exalting Shakespeare as a figure that transcended his popular roots, placing him on the same level as the established Greek and Latin classics This topic will be discussed in detail later on in chapter 2.

Culture industry

Starting with the Jubilee, by the mid th century Stratford had already become the centre of a kind of literary pilgrimage The first Shakespeare Festival originated a series of events that today, paradoxically, contribute to the re-popularization of the Bard, but at the time, it elevated him to the holy space once occupied by God and the monarch, in religious and political festivity these issues will be further discussed in chapter 2.

That exemplifies the position of culture icon Shakespeare has come to occupy, to a certain extent, because of the educational system.


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In and , English was institutionalized as a discipline with Shakespeare at its core, at Cambridge and Oxford, respectively. In this way, the playwright became an agent of bourgeois socialization and regulation, even in the theatres, as they also were regulated by middle class moral codes:. The older forms of communal spectatorship — especially the unruliness of the pit — were being replaced by a class-inflected expectation that one would remain passive, quiet, and respectful. That is, although, theatre audiences came from nearly all social strata, their conduct and thus their experience of Shakespeare was increasingly regulated by genteel codes of decorum However, telling examples that reject this attitude today can be found, mainly in outdoor performances and festivals and through the work of companies dedicated to demystify and re-popularise Shakespeare and the theatrical art.

They will be extensively discussed in chapters 2 and 3. As social construction, the cultural practices involving Shakespeare depend on, are influenced by and cannot be dissociated from other social practices that are mutable, unstable and susceptible to changes. Examples of the flexible use of his name can be found in Italian opera as well as in pornographic movies Representations of Shakespeare as the man, the author and the works, may vary from reverential, traditional, respectful, witty, and critical to silly, comic, cheeky, mocking, disrespectful, delinquent and insulting, depending on how you view them.

However, still today, debates around the appropriation and production of Shakespeare are inextricably linked with questions of status, class, value, cultural ownership and educational achievement. At the same time, Shakespeare still stands apart from theses subdivisions of what is commonly seen as popular culture, representing an icon of high culture. Douglas Lanier exposes a common perception about Shakespeare and popular culture:.

Popular culture, so the story goes, is aesthetically unsophisticated, disposable, immediately accessible and therefore shallow, concerned with immediate pleasures and effects, unprogressive in its politics, aimed at the lowest common denominator, mass-produced by corporations for financial gain. Shakespeare is the elite, untouchable icon, exclusive, belonging to the realm of art, difficult, naturally perfect, dealing with universal issues and comprehended by a minority. I will try, nonetheless, to present different discussions and perceptions over the subject.

What can we then distill from these and other views on popular theatre? A branch of this view sets popular culture as dependent upon wide approval from and identification with a large audience, as opposed to high culture which demands reverence and distance, and disregard its entertainment value or the size of its audience. As a guiding example of popular theatre under this perception, the West End musicals in London would fit perfectly, as a commercial product that encourages a satisfied attitude towards things as they are Purcell 9.

A popular theatre in this sense would have to speak to the people in the same language as them, representing and giving voice to their own fears and joys. This model opens itself up to social inclusion, meaning to embrace the largest and most heterogeneous within the lower social and cultural classes underserved groups of people.

One of its main assets lies on its capacity to build a sense of community within the audience and with the actors, albeit temporarily.

Nihilism & Popular Culture

Sharing a collective imaginative experience, it leads people out of loneliness and may strengthen a group identity — a quality that can also pose some problems, for it may serve conservative or progressive political purposes. While it can endorse important values e. Here, popular theatre must involve criticism and laughing not only at the world out of its representation, but also the one within, along with its participants. Popular audiences may then feel free to appropriate popular and high culture for their own ends, and that has certainly been the case for Shakespeare.

Firstly, Shakespeare has been used to legitimate new media, such as the movies, then the radio, after, the television, and even the internet, with, for example the Royal Shakespeare Company twitter version of Romeo and Juliet Lanier confirmed this legitimating power:. But another and more intriguing way in which Shakespeare has been appropriated is through parody. If invoking his iconic status may legitimise practices, it may also serve to resist and criticise the practices, values and institutions associated with high culture:.


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These appropriations target the sorts of social and interpretive decorum that govern how high art is treated, as well as those who enforce that decorum, authority figures like teachers, intellectuals, antiquarians, actors, and bluebloods. Paradoxically, this sort of appropriation reinforces the high cultural image of Shakespeare at the same time as it critiques those who support that image. Popular culture exploits Shakespeare for cultural authority and to create meanings through interplay between cultural systems and institutions.

Holding a special status with a double life,. Shakespeare is recognizable to highbrow and lowbrow audiences though not in the same ways , and serves important iconic functions in both canonical and popular culture. And popular culture is a powerful cultural mechanism through which that recognition and misrecognition is sustained. I see them rather as instances of language, of social constructions, in constant exchange, shift, and negotiation. However, for the purposes of the discussions in the next two chapters, I will be referring to these concepts in relation to more common and concrete categories that are widely accepted.

Popular culture will refer to other than formal sources of knowledge, including traditional practices, folklore, customs and oral transmission of memory, to communal values and essentially shared practices, as well as to a site of identification and vindication of identities. Generally speaking, popular practices were often linked with hedonism and heathenism. Others simply found popular festivities cruel and violent, not least because such festive occasions often involved jokes about cripples, accidents in games and sports, etc Laroque 31, They were anglicanized the use of vernacular English was an important premise of the Reformation , simplified with condemnation of the spectacular nature of the Catholic service and reduced in number of feast days.

For most pre-Reformation religious festivals that were revoked, new and civic festivals of national and Protestant nature emerged.

Pop Culture Essay Examples

More often than not, new festival dates coincided with the old Catholic calendar; sometimes the nature of the celebration was kept and was merely transferred to other dates; or names and reasons were simply changed. In fact, that process of replacement was not new, as the festive Catholic calendar put in place with the advent of Christianity was more of a fusion of the old pagan, pre-Christian calendars and celebrations Laroque 16, 19 and Laroque explains that. The monarchy usurped the place of the Church, with the result that the erstwhile cult of the Virgin and saints was now transferred to the sovereign and her entourage.

Thus, partially influenced by royal ideological use and despite religious and social conflicts, festivity was found in all social levels in the 16 th century. When Oliver Cromwell won over the Royalists in the s , he managed to suppress most feast days and was met with great popular resentment.

Celebrations happened on the same dates both at court and in the country, and they both enjoyed music, dancing, feasting and masquerade Henry VIII, it seems, enjoyed disguising himself as Robin Hood, a popular champion.

Essay on Cultures Influences on Art - Words | Bartleby

Moreover, many of those royal events were free and available to all, attracting the crowds. It was far more common to find elements of popular culture permeating aristocratic culture and, in exchange, popular culture appropriating aristocratic themes Arthurian legends, for instance , than one might think Laroque During this celebration, the Lord Of Misrule 38 disturbed order: social norm and conventional hierarchies were upset through mockery and misrule in live dramatic performances, the world was turned upside down and sometimes perverted, and subversion was aimed to destabilize authority with fun.

It questioned and destabilised the established order. Henderson explains that misrule played an important role contrasting holiday and everyday worlds, but it could be interpreted as a parody of mutinous feelings on the part of the commons, as a manoeuvre on the part of the monarchy to build a post-feudal national awareness, or yet as tools for the elite to express its dissatisfaction That importance was partially secured in a debt to popular culture. Very much aware of the popular demands and eager to cater for them, companies and their playwrights were keen to draw their productions and inspiration from legends, traditions and myths linked to celebrations from the calendary festivals.

Drama was primarily the most popular medium of entertainment, in comparison to poetry and prose, and the location and design next to whorehouses and bear and bull baiting arenas, or other animal fighting pits, which could take place even inside the theatres of the playhouses tell us much about the kind of relationship they bore with popular crowds.