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Popular Culture and High Culture: An Analysis and Evaluation Of Taste 2nd Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0465026098
ISBN-10: 0465026095
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  • Popular Culture and High Culture: An Analysis and Evaluation Of Taste
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  • From Lowbrow to Nobrow
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  • Highbrow/Lowbrow: The Emergence of Cultural Hierarchy in America (The William E. Massey Sr. Lectures in the History of American Civilization)
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Herbert J. Gans, author of Levittowners and The Urban Villagers, is professor of sociology at Columbia University and the former president of the American Sociological Association.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 266 pages
  • Publisher: Basic Books; 2 edition (September 24, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0465026095
  • ISBN-13: 978-0465026098
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #247,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Lam Kam Ying Mary on November 18, 2006
Format: Paperback
I dont want to belabour here the greatness of Gans's study: it's an acknowledged classic and needs no further recommendation. But I would like to draw attention to a slightly less known study by Peter Swirski, called "From Lowbrow to Nobrow" (published about a year ago) which in many ways continues the line of inquiry spearheaded by Gans. As a matter of fact, Chapter 2 in "From Lowbrow to Nobrow" leans on Gans's book when it provides a thorough review (and a wonderful debunking) of a multitude of accusations raised against popular culture and popular fiction over the decades. Swirski tends to be more humorous and colloquial, and focuses mainly on literature and film, whereas Gans takes a more "wholistic" and sociological approach to popular culture. Otherwise, it is hard for me to decide which book I learned more from.
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Format: Paperback
I just want to say that i agree with the review above. I read both of these books, Gans' Popular Culture and High Culture and Swirski's From lowbrow to Nobrow and i think both are great, they explore the same subjects, the are both easy and entertaining to read, and both pay a great deal of attention to sociological issues in contemporary culture. Naturally Swirski is more up to date and his perspective is a little broader, because he deals with aesthetics as well, but these two books are quite related, almost like two chapters of a much bigger book.
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Format: Paperback
Gans makes the general argument that in a pluralistic, democratic country we all deserve the culture we want whether it be high or low. Some parts of the book are pretty dated, but overall this is an excellent analysis of American cultural stratification and the creators and users of that culture.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
very interestingly written
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