Posts tagged ‘clash of the classes’

A Spot Of Light Reading: Stuart Hall: Notes On Deconstructing The Popular

Main Points:

  • ‘periodisation’ – he addresses our need to ‘categorize’ everything into ‘blocks’.
  • ‘class struggle’ – he talks of the continous struggle between the working, labouring, and the poor
  • ‘reformation’ – changes culture
  • tradition is hard to maintain as changing world makes it hard to set a ‘tradition’
  • popular press changed culture as did revolutions, & capitalism
  • culture constantly changes. Old things make way for new things.

Methods used:

  • Historiography
  • Own views and ideas
  • Cross-analyses facts with his own views and what he percievs culture to be like today.


  • ‘popular culture’ remains hard to define/pin point due to the ever-changing modern world.
  • Remains as ‘people vs power’ still


I do agree with how hard it can be now-a-days to define such a concept as ‘culture’ as we are constantly seeing new ‘niche cultures’ surfacing due to citizen journalism and a larger media market that caters for a much wider market.

However, he does seem to ‘shun’ the idea of ‘popular culture’, and talks of how everything blends into one, which I feel is a good thing, as it means that it is received by a much wider audience. (Popstar To Operastar).

Useful Quotes:

  • ‘‘tradisionalism’ has so often been misinterpreted as a product of a merely conservative impulse, backward-looking and anachronistic.’
  • ‘’Cultural change’ is a polite euphemism for the process by which some cultural forms and practices are driven out of the centre of popular life, actively marginalised. Rather than simply falling into disuse through the long march to modernism, things are actively pushed aside, so that something else can take their place.’
  • ‘’Class-against-class’, is the central line of contradiction around which the terrain of culture is polarised’
  • ‘The study of popular culture keeps shifting between these two, quite unacceptable poles: pure ‘autonomy’ or total encapsulation.’