David Oswell has written a comprehensive introduction to cultural studies that guides the reader through the field's central foundations and its freshest ideas. This book: - grounds the reader in the foundations of cultural studies and cultural theory: language and semiology, ideology and power, mass and popular culture;- analyzes the central problems: identity, body, economy, globalization and empire;- introduces the latest developments on materiality, agency, technology and nature.Culture and Society is an invaluable guide for students navigating the dynamic debates and intellectual challenges of cultural studies. Its breadth and unparallelled coverage of cutting-edge theory will also ensure that it is read by anyone interested in questions of materiality and culture.`Too often cultural studies discourse seems cut off from wider developments in social theory. As a sociologist with a strong cultural studies sensibility, David Oswell is ideally placed to put this right. Through a series of well-judged and historically nuanced readings of cultural, social theory and critical philosophy, this book provides just the bridge between cultural studies and wider debates that we need' - Nick Couldry, Redaer in Media, Communications and Culture, London School of Economics and Political Science

Introduction: From the Beginning

Introduction: From the Beginning

Introduction: From the beginning

In the south east of Brazil, in the state of Minas Gerais, in the small town of Ponte Nova beneath the mountains, a boy grows up in an Arab community, listening to the sound of Lebanese voices, singing the mass in an old, local Catholic church. In his youth he gets interested in jazz and bossa nova. In 1970, at the age of 24, João Bosco meets the carioca poet Aldir Blanc and they start playing samba, boleros, a mix of Latin, Caribbean and African music. One of the songs they create is a beautiful tune called ‘O Mestre Sala dos Mares’ (The Master of Ceremonies of the Seas) (1975). The song talks of a ‘black navigator’ visiting ...

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