In this book, one of the most accomplished and thoughtful cultural commentators of the day, considers the contradictory nature of cultural relations. Elizabeth Wilson explores these themes through an examination of fashion, feminism, consumer culture, representation and postmodernism. Debates within feminism on the nature and effects of pornography are used to illustrate a particular kind of cultural contradiction. Wilson recognizes that postmodernism permitted the reappropriation of subjects that were not previously considered worthy of attention, or opposed to the idea of emancipation, chief among these was fashion. She shows that the association of an interest in this culturally significant subject with a revisionist project raises doubt

The Invisible Flâneur: Afterword

The invisible flâneur: afterword

Sometime in the mid-1980s cultural sociologists and critics discovered and became fascinated by the flâneur as a key figure of modernity. Just why this was so is not clear. It may have had to do with the parallel interest developing at the same period in the sociology of consumption, with a more general interest in the nature of the postmodern city, and with the revival of city centres through culture and the growth of tourism. In 1994 the publication of The Flâneur, edited by Keith Tester, signified a high point of interest, but not even the insightful and informative articles in his collection could resolve the ambiguity of the elusive loiterer, nor explain his revived popularity.

If the flâneur ...

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