Ethnographers of the Everyday

Posted on | October 4, 2011 | Comments Off real gambling systems

The new issue of n1br has launched with my essay on Stephen Schryer’s new book Fantasies of the New Class—a study of how the post-war American novel dealt with the professionalization of intellectual culture.

The humanities have been looking a little haggard lately. The UK recently saw government-mandated cuts to university programs; American universities have experienced more of a war of attrition, a steady drainage of students and dollars. The humanities’ abiding self-defense—that art and literature defend values that the free market fails to support—may persuade in and of itself, but the academy has been little inclined to communicate those values in language and teaching that would secure their transfer to a new generation of students. As William Deresiewicz concluded in a review for The Nation on the current barrage of books on higher education, “The liberal arts, as we know, are dying. All the political and parental pressure is pushing in the other direction, toward the ‘practical,’ narrowly conceived: the instrumental, the utilitarian, the immediately negotiable.” The humanities can no longer be counted on to operate as a check against the reductive machinery of a corporatized American culture. [More here.]

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