Idealist Culture VS Materialist Culture

February 12, 2012 Ivan Teh - RunningMan 0 Comments

Idealist Culture VS Materialist Culture


The 2 schools of thought on culture in society, and a comparision.






Idealist Culture by Matthew Arnold, Frank Raymond "F. R." Leavis (High Culture) - Defined As:
- The best that has been said and thought in the world
- Beauty, intelligence and perfection
- Assumes that these values exist in the abstract and are the same for all human societies
- The world will be a better place if more people will share and pursue these notions of beauty, truth, and perfection of culture
- A high point of civilization
- A civilizing force against the masses
- Positioned against the mass culture of industrialization
- Aesthetic quality of beauty, goodness and value
- Active policing of the “canon”
- Institutionalized and class-based








Materialist Culture by Raymond Williams (Low Culture / Popular Culture) - Defined As:
- Culture is ordinary, in every society and in every mind
- Working class cultural practices
- Lived daily practices - norms, symbols and values
- Democratic - socialist groundings, class warfare
- A culture has two aspects: the known meanings and directions, which its members are trained to; the new observations and meanings, which are offered and tested.
- Cultural literacy and coding / shared meanings
- Constant learning
- Always contested / State of flux
- We use the word culture in these two senses: to mean a whole way of life - the common meanings; to mean the arts and learning - the special processes of discovery and creative effort.
- Always both traditional and creative






Idealist Culture VS Materialist Culture (Arnold VS Williams) !
- High & Low VS Daily
- Minority VS Majority
- Ephemeral (Special) VS Ordinary
- Aesthetic Quality VS Social Relations (totality)
- Universalistic VS Localized
- Limited VS Social





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