- Series: Media and Popular Culture 1 (Book 1)
- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (January 1, 1992)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 041590725X
- ISBN-13: 978-0415907255
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #949,343 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Communication as Culture, Revised Edition: Essays on Media and Society (Media and Popular Culture 1) 1st Edition
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Carey's seminal work joins central issues in the field and redefines them. AN historically inspired treatment of major figures and theories, required reading for the sophisticated scholar..
George Gerbner, Dean, The Annenberg School of Communication, University of Pennsylvania
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"A ritual view of communication is directed not toward the extension of messages in space but toward the maintenance of society in time; not the act of imparting information but the representation of shared beliefs." [p 18]
"... communication is a symbolic process whereby reality is produced, maintained, repaired, and transformed." [p 23]
"But social life is more than power and trade (and it is more than therapy as well). As Williams has argued, it also includes the sharing of aesthetic experience, religious ideas, personal values and sentiments, and intellectual notions-a ritual order." [p 34]
"Social scientists have political theories and subjects have political ideologies; the behavior of social scientists is free and rationally informed, whereas their subjects are conditioned and ruled by habit and superstition-not good intellectual soil for a working democracy." [p 62]
It is the great power of symbols to portray that which they pretend to describe. That is, symbols have an `of' and a `for' side. It is this dual nature that allows us to produce the world by symbolic work and then take up residence in the world so produced." [p 85]
Preferred jobs are positional goods, as opposed to material goods,... and they are valued because they are in short supply." [p 102]
To the old slogan that money is to the West what kinship is to the rest he added that kinship performs a continuing integrative function in advanced societies. In a sense Durkheim inverts the relations of base and superstructure: the capitalist economy thrives on the root system of traditional society." [p 109]
"For Innis uncovered the most vulnerable point in the rhetoric of the electrical sublime and disputed all those claims for electricity that McLuhan celebrated. Innis principally disputed the notion that electricity would replace centralization in economics and politics with decentralization, democracy, and a cultural revival. Innis placed the `tragedy of modern culture' in America and Europe upon the intrinsic tendencies of both printing press and electronic media to reduce space and time to the service of a calculus of commercialism and expansionism." [p133]
"Seymour Mandelbaum's Boss Tweed's New York is a marvelous though often complacent study of the reorganization of New York City essentially on a metropole-hinterland model. My own studies suggest that same model of development holds true at the regional and county levels.
"The United States, then, at all levels of social structure pursued what I call a high communications policy, one aimed solely at spreading messages further in space and reducing the cost of transmission." [p 155]
"Innis argued that changes in communication technology affected culture by altering the structure of interests (the things thought about) by changing the character of symbols (the things thought with), and by changing the nature of community (the arena in which thought developed)." [p 160]
"The First Amendment, then, did not secure the permanence of public life; in fact it acted against it because it finally placed the weight of education on the written tradition. Modern media of communication, largely for commercial purposes, created a system of communication that was essentially private. Private reading and the reading audience replaced the reading public and the public of discussion and argument. The system of communication that actually evolved was grounded, therefore, not merely in a spatial bias but in a privatized one as well. It was privatization more than the Bill of Rights that led to the decline of censorship: `Decline in the practice of reading aloud led to a decline in the importance of censorship. The individual was taken over by the printing industry and his interest developed in material not suited to general conversation'. Under such conditions the public becomes a mere statistical artifact, public taste a measure of private opinion that has been both cultivated and objectified but not realized in discourse. With that the public sphere goes into eclipse." [p 166]
"Modern oracles, like their ancient counterparts, constitute a privileged class who monopolize new forms of knowledge and alternatively panic and enrapture large audiences as they portray new versions of the future. Moreover, modern scientific elites often occupy the same double role of oracles to the people and servants of the ruling class as did the astrologers of ancient civilization." [p 173]
"Modern engineering is communication engineering, for its major preoccupation is not the economy of energy `but the accurate reproduction of a signal.'" [p 190]
"The technology of the computer and the satellite has real effects, among them the capacity to simulate complex environments and to reduce, as I said at the outset, time to a picosecond and space to a universal point. But postmodernism too often merely evacuates the present into a landscape where the world is all surface, no depth, and the vulgar appears sublime." [p 200]
"The most important fact about the telegraph is at once the most obvious and innocent: It permitted for the first time the effective separation of communication from transportation." [p 203]
"If the same story were to be understood in the same way from Maine to California, language had to be flattened out and standardized. The telegraph, therefore, led to the disappearance of forms of speech and styles of journalism and story telling-the tall story, the hoax, much humor, irony, and satire-that depended on a more traditional use of the symbolic, a use I earlier called the fiduciary. The origins of objectivity may be sought, therefore, in the necessity of stretching language in space over the long lines of Western Union." [p 210]
"After the telegraph, commodity trading moved from trading between places to trading between times. The arbitrager trades Cincinnati for St. Louis; the futures trader sells August against October, this year against next." [p 218]