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Doing Cultural Theory

Doing Cultural Theory

March 2012 | 352 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
"Will be a very useful tool for any student trying to make sense of the vast expanses of contemporary cultural theory and criticism. Well-written and admirably self-reflective, it combines rigorous explications and applications of many of the most influential concepts and theorists."
- Lawrence Grossberg, University of North Carolina

"Accessible and insightful throughout; offering help to both experienced and inexperienced students of cultural theory. Highly recommended."
- John Storey, University of Sunderland

Doing Cultural Theory
teaches more than just the basics of cultural theory. It unpacks its complexities with real-life examples, and shows readers how to link theory and practice. This book:
  • Offers accessible introductions to how cultural studies has engaged with key theories in structuralism, poststructuralism and postmodernism
  • Teaches straightforward ways of practising these theories so students learn to think for themselves
  • Uses 'practice' boxes to show students how to apply cultural theory in the real world
  • Guides students through the literature with carefully selected further reading recommendation.

Other textbooks only show how others have analyzed and interpreted the world. Doing Cultural Theory takes it a step further and teaches students step-by-step how to do cultural theory for themselves.

Introducing Cultural Studies: A Brief Contextual History
Structuralism and the Linguistic Turn: Ferdinand de Saussure
Semiotics: Umberto Eco, Roland Barthes and Stuart Hall
Ideology: Marxism and Louis Althusser
Post-Structuralism: Roland Barthes and Jacques Derrida
Doing Deconstruction: Techniques for Practice
Psychoanalysis: Jacques Lacan
Applying Lacan: Techniques for Feminist and other forms of Cultural Analysis
Discourse and Power: Michel Foucault
Gender and Sexuality: Judith Butler
The Postmodern Condition: Daniel Bell, Jean-François Lyotard and J rgen Habermas
Identity and Consumption: Jean Baudrillard
Postmodernism Unplugged: Fredric Jameson
Practising Cultural Studies: Hegemony and Cognitive Mapping
Where to Go from Here: Cognitive Mapping and the Critical Project of Cultural Studies

David Walton offers an excellent introduction to the history of cultural studies as well as of its key theories such as structuralism, poststructuralism, psychoanalysis and discourse analysis. Each chapter is self-contained so that it is very convenient to excerpts in class. Teaching "Introduction to Cultural Studies", I very much appreciate Walton's pragmatic approach to theoretical concepts. The way he exemplifies abstract ideas is perfect for first- and second-year students of cultural studies.
This book helped me a lot in teaching cultural studies and I can only recommend it to students and instructors alike.

Ms Isabell Grosse
English Literature, University of Leipzig
August 7, 2019

A comprehensive and well-balanced text that brings valuable insights in different aspect of cultural theory.

Dr Gabriele Habinger
Dept of Social & Cultural Anthropoloy, University of Vienna
July 22, 2019

Teachers who know this work will not be surprised to read that I am recommending it to our MA students – and to some of our final year BA students – because it is, as others have said, a tool-kit as well as a textbook. Walton is committed to helping students mature in learning how to integrate theory and praxis, and this comes through clearly. He provides excellent introductions to engagement with structuralism, poststructuralism and postmodernism, and his goal is always to help students to think and evaluate for themselves. The many 'Practice' boxes, taking students directly into the issues around applying cultural theory, are also a great teaching aid for class sessions.

Dr Walter Riggans
Cliff College, Cliff College
November 13, 2015

A fantastic introduction to cultural theory and its application to research. The author uses current explames to illustrate the points and introduces theory in an esy to grasp manner. It covers all the major theories that one would need to know when engaging in cultural studies

Mr Fergus Hogan
Department of Applied Arts, Waterford Institute of Technology
May 22, 2015

Too specific for my applied social science students

Dr Mark Taylor
Department of Marketing, Leisure and Tourism, Sligo Institute of Technology
March 24, 2015

This book will be recommended not only to our fourth year post-graduate students, but also to our MA and PhD students. It is ideal for any student/scholar who is doing application-based work/research in both mass communication studies and cultural studies. The emphasis, as the title clearly states, is on DOING, and is a practical guide to applying difficult concepts such as phenomenology, to application. A wonderful find.

Professor Beschara Karam
Department of Communicatin Science, University of South Africa
February 12, 2015

Great text with some relevance to current teaching.

Mr David Ness
Social Science, Moray College UHI
May 16, 2014

To general and vague

Dr Berndt Clavier
Interdiscipline , Malmo University
February 21, 2014

The tone just wasn't the right "fit" for the course.

Melissa Camacho
Broadcast Electronic Comm Dept, San Francisco State University
October 30, 2013

Nice background to the study of popular culture.

Dr Joanie Willett
Department of Politics, Exeter University
June 24, 2013

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter One

For instructors

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ISBN: 9780857024855
ISBN: 9780857024848

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