The Invisible Hand in Popular Culture

Liberty Vs. Authority in American Film and TV

Author: Paul Arthur Cantor

Publisher: University Press of Kentucky

ISBN: 081314082X

Category: Social Science

Page: 461

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Popular culture often champions freedom as the fundamentally American way of life and celebrates the virtues of independence and self-reliance. But film and television have also explored the tension between freedom and other core values, such as order and political stability. What may look like healthy, productive, and creative freedom from one point of view may look like chaos, anarchy, and a source of destructive conflict from another. Film and television continually pose the question: Can Americans deal with their problems on their own, or must they rely on political elites to manage their lives? In this groundbreaking work, Paul A. Cantor explores the ways in which television shows such as Star Trek, The X-Files, South Park, and Deadwood and films such as The Aviator and Mars Attacks! have portrayed both top-down and bottom-up models of order. Drawing on the works of John Locke, Adam Smith, Alexis de Tocqueville, and other proponents of freedom, Cantor contrasts the classical liberal vision of America -- particularly its emphasis on the virtues of spontaneous order -- with the Marxist understanding of the "culture industry" and the Hobbesian model of absolute state control. The Invisible Hand in Popular Culture concludes with a discussion of the impact of 9/11 on film and television, and the new anxieties emerging in contemporary alien-invasion narratives: the fear of a global technocracy that seeks to destroy the nuclear family, religious faith, local government, and other traditional bulwarks against the absolute state.
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The Re-Enchantment of the West, Vol 2

Alternative Spiritualities, Sacralization, Popular Culture and Occulture

Author: Christopher Partridge

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 0567552713

Category: Social Science

Page: 482

View: 1507

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The Re-Enchantment of the West challenges those theories that predict widespread secularization beyond traditional institutional religiosity. Spiritualities are emerging that are not only quite different from the those forms of religion that are in decline, but are often defined over against them and articulated and passed on in ways quite different from those of traditional religion. In particular, it is argued that such contemporary Western spirituality is fed by a constantly replenished reservoir of ideas, practices, and methodologies, which is here termed 'occulture'. Moreover, such occultural ideas both feed into and are resourced by popular culture. Indeed, popular occulture is a key feature of the re-enchantment of the West. Demonstrating the significance and ubiquity of these ideas, this book examines, for example, healthcare and nursing, contemporary environmentalism, psychedelia and drug use, the Internet and cyberspirituality, belief in UFOs and extraterrestrial life, demonology and the contemporary fascination with the figure of Satan, the heavy metal subculture, popular apocalypticism, and millennial violence.
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The re-enchantment of the West

alternative spiritualities, sacralization, popular culture, and occulture

Author: Christopher Hugh Partridge

Publisher: T&T Clark Int'l

ISBN: N.A

Category: Religion

Page: 468

View: 359

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Challenging some assessments of religion in the West, this study argues that, although much organized religion, particularly Christianity, is in numerical decline, in actual fact we are witnessing an alternative spiritual re-enchantment of society and culture.
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Aliens in Popular Culture

Author: Michael M. Levy,Farah Mendlesohn

Publisher: ABC-CLIO

ISBN: 144083833X

Category: Social Science

Page: 330

View: 2779

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An indispensable resource, this book provides wide coverage on aliens in fiction and popular culture. • Provides cultural context in introductory essays on some of the key themes and contexts of alien representation • Covers a broad scope, with more than 130 entries on different topics, and is written by nearly 90 researchers with diverse expertise • Shows readers the varied ways that imagined aliens have become a part of popular culture • Presents both familiar topics and more obscure topics in popular culture to provide new scholarship
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They Know Us Better Than We Know Ourselves

The History and Politics of Alien Abduction

Author: Bridget Brown

Publisher: NYU Press

ISBN: 0814786359

Category: History

Page: 247

View: 1396

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Since its emergence in the 1960s, belief in alien abduction has saturated popular culture, with the ubiquitous image of the almond-eyed alien appearing on everything from bumper stickers to bars of soap. Drawing on interviews with alleged abductees from the New York area, Bridget Brown suggests a new way for people to think about the alien phenomenon, one that is concerned not with establishing whether aliens actually exist, but with understanding what belief in aliens in America may tell us about our changing understanding of ourselves and our place in the world. They Know Us Better Than We Know Ourselves looks at how the belief in abduction by extraterrestrials is constituted by and through popular discourse and the images provided by print, film, and television. Brown contends that the abduction phenomenon is symptomatic of a period during which people have come to feel increasingly divested of the ability to know what is real or true about themselves and the world in which they live. The alien abduction phenomenon helps us think about how people who feel left out create their own stories and fashion truths that square with their own experience of the world.
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Fin-de-Siècle Fictions, 1890s-1990s

Apocalypse, Technoscience, Empire

Author: A. Mousoutzanis

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137430141

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 258

View: 2737

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Fin-de-Siècle Fictions, 1890s- 1990s focuses on fin-de-siècle British and postmodern American fictions of apocalypse and investigates the ways in which these narratives demonstrate shifts in the relations among modern discourses of power and knowledge.
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Science in Popular Culture

A Reference Guide

Author: A. Bowdoin Van Riper

Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group

ISBN: 9780313318221

Category: Science

Page: 314

View: 7093

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Spaceships travel through time at lightspeed, piloted by human clones and talking animals. Serious injuries are healed with the wave of a medical gizmo. The media make it all look so real. Can scientists hope to one day accomplish these feats? This book is a fun look at what can, and can't, be achieved with current technology.
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