Doing Cultural Studies: The Story of the Sony Walkman

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SAGE, Feb 10, 1997 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 151 pages
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In recent years `culture' has become a central concern in a wide range of fields and disciplines. This book introduces the main substantive and theoretical strands of this `turn to culture' through the medium of a particular case study: that of the Sony Walkman. Using the example of the Walkman, the book indicates how and why cultural practices and institutions have come to play such a crucial part in our lives, and introduces some of the central ideas, concepts and methods of analysis involved in conducting cultural studies.
 

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this is an important cultural studies text but almost in a historical sense - the normativity in evaluating any construct of consumer culture is too forefront to result in a truly insightful conclusion. Still, there is a lot of value in reading this historically, and considering the possibilities of 'reading' culture as text.  

Contents

MAKING SENSE OF THE WALKMAN
17
THE PRODUCTION OF THE SONY WALKMAN
43
ARTICULATING
63
SONY AS A GLOBAL FIRM
77
CONSUMING THE WALKMAN
89
REGULATING THE WALKMAN I I I
113
The work of art in the age
125
The selling of the Walkman
131
A miniature history of the Walkman
141
INDEX
147
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About the author (1997)

Stuart Hall was born and raised in Jamaica and arrived in Britain on a Rhodes scholarship to Oxford in 1950. In 1958, he left his PhD on Henry James to found the New Left Review, which did much to open a debate about immigration and the politics of identity. Along with Raymond Williams and Richard Hoggart he established the first Cultural Studies programme at a British university in Birmingham in 1964, bringing the study of popular culture into the understanding of political and social change.

After spending more than four decades as one of the UK’s leading public intellectuals, Hall retired from formal academic life in 1997 and since then has continued to devote himself to questions of representation, creativity and difference. He became the chair of two foundations, Iniva, the Institute of International Visual Arts, and Autograph ABP, which seeks to promote photographers from culturally diverse backgrounds, and championed the opening of Iniva’s new Rivington Place arts complex in east London in 2007.

Keith Negus entered higher education as a mature student, having spent many years playing keyboards and guitar in a variety of bands after leaving school. He gained a degree in Sociology from Middlesex Universit and then completed a PhD study of the acquisition, production and promotion of recording artists at SouthBank University. He subsequently taught at the Universities of Leicester and Puerto Rico and was based in the Department of Media and Communications prior to moving the Department of Music at Goldsmiths. He is Director of the Popular Music Research Unit, convenor of BMus Popular Music, convenor of the MA Music (Popular Music Research) and a coordinating editor of Popular Music (Cambridge University Press).

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