With the ‘cultural turn’, the concept of culture has assumed enormous importance in our understanding of the interrelations between social, political, and economic structures, patterns of everyday interaction, and systems of meaning-making. In The SAGE Handbook of Cultural Analysis, the leading figures in their fields explore the implications of this paradigm shift. Addressed to academics and advanced students in all fields of the social sciences and humanities, this Handbook is at once a synthesis of advances in the field, with a comprehensive coverage of the scholarly literature, and a collection of original and provocative essays by some of the brightest intellectuals of our time.
Although this is the only chapter of the Handbook that is focused on literary study, a glance through the Contributors Notes will show it to be far from the only one whose author is housed in a literature department. The large number of contributors who either are now or have been at some point in their careers members of English or Comparative Literature faculties is an index of literature's enduringly powerful position within the disciplinary spaces where cultural theory and analysis are practised. Though departmental divisions and emphases vary significantly from one institution and one country to another, the general rule at most of the world's colleges and universities is that literature departments are larger than departments of art history or music ...