Hegemony & Fetishism

: an economic good: as
 a : a product of agriculture or mining
 b : an article of commerce especially when
delivered for shipment <commodities futures>
 c : a mass-produced unspecialized product
<commoditychemicals> <commodity memory
 a : something useful or valued <that valuable
commoditypatience>; also : THING, ENTITY
: an object (as a small stone carving of an
animal) believed to have magical power to
protect or aid its owner; broadly : a
material object regarded with superstitious
or extravagant trust or reverence
 b : an object of irrational reverence or
obsessive devotion :
a prying observer who is usually seeking the
sordid or the scandalous
 The domination of a culturally diverse society by the
ruling class who manipulate the culture of the society
— the beliefs, perceptions, values, and mores — so
that their ruling-class becomes the worldview that is
imposed and accepted as the cultural norm; as the
universally valid dominant ideology that justifies the
social, political, and economic status quo as natural
and inevitable, perpetual and beneficial for everyone,
rather than as artificial social constructs that benefit
only the ruling class
o base--the foundation on which a society rests (think,
"basement"). Societies are inherently conservative, so
each society (especially those currently benefiting
from whatever economic base is in place) wants to
perpetuate or continually reproduce its base--those
foundational economic structures. Those
foundational economic structures are often class
interactions and power hierarchies.
The superstructure which is a more effective social tool
for perpetrating the base is a collection of "ideological
state apparatuses" such as religion, schools, and art,
including literature. Marxist Critics see art as
reproducing the economic and social foundations of
their societies, OR as (with varying degrees of success
and overt-ness) criticizing and attempting to overthrow
said economic and social foundations.
Marx viewed the commodity as the "cell-form" or
building unit of capitalist society—it is an object useful
to somebody else, but with a trading value for the
because the expansion of markets had in reality
objectified most economic relations: the cash nexus
stripped away all previous religious and political
illusions (only to replace them, however, with another
kind of illusion— commodity fetishism).
The power of the dominant ideology to reproduce itself in
art and through art is called hegemony.
How could film/art/music/literature be used to
support the status quo?
• What does it say about a society when we
value/uphold/ and propagate TV/actors/films that
promote stupidity and greed? Or unattainable
images of beauty?