Over the last 20 years culture has become a key concept in intellectual disciplines across the social sciences and humanities. However, it is a notoriously difficult concept to pin down, having very different meanings in different contexts. This book seeks to chart a route through the maze, revealing the variety of meanings of culture. It demonstrates that culture is not something that emerges from out of human activity, but rather is part and parcel of it. This book looks at how culture emerges and manifests itself in human life, and how it is experienced in the life of individuals and collectivities. It also explores the ways in which globalizing processes and changes in technology are affecting cultural identity, and w

Transformatory Processes of Culture: Knowledge and Freedom

Transformatory processes of culture: Knowledge and freedom

Therefore, I replied, somewhat at loose ends, we would have to eat again of the tree of knowledge to fall back again into a state of innocence?

Most certainly, he replied: That is the last chapter of the history of the world.

Heinrich von Kleist

‘The history of the world,’ Hegel famously wrote in The Philosophy of History, ‘is none other than the progress of the consciousness of freedom’ (1956: 19). Certainly today we live with cultural values that promote freedom as an unqualified aspiration, if not always as a realisation. Few people would even make an attempt to argue against freedom as being inherently to be desired. Even those who in practice act against ...

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