Cultural Studies and the Study of Cultures

Cultural Studies and the Study of Cultural Construction
The idea of cultural construction
The things, objects, categories that we accept as natural are nothing but cultural
e.g., Kids
Characteristics of cultural constructions
Time-space relativity
Incoherent and inconsistent
Continually changing
Culture vs. Nature
Naturalization of cultural construction
Why study cultural construction?
Cultural constructions are our common sense, our basic framework of our thinking and
Cultural constructions are roots of inequality and injustice
e.g., gender relationships
Formal equality: legal provisions, constitutional rights, economic
opportunities etc.
Cultural constraints: stereotypes, cultural Ideal Types, cultural practices in
gender relationships etc.
The idea of Critical Cultural Studies
Criticizing cultural constructions as a way to criticize inequality and injustice
Cultural Studies and Media Studies:
The mass media as the major site for cultural construction/representation
The study of popular culture, e.g., Hollywood movies
The study of news and journalism, e.g., how particular social groups are
represented on the news
Three part of studying media representation:
The study of production
The study of texts
The study of reception