Revisiting Richard Hoggart’s classic work The Uses of Literacy (1957), this book applies Hoggart’s framework to media literacy today, examining media literacy’s various uses, the tensions between them and what this means for people, communities and the contemporary configurations of social class.
In The Uses of Literacy (1957), Richard Hoggart wrote about how his working class community, in the North of England, were at once using the new ‘mass literacy’ for self-improvement, education, social mobility and civic engagement and, at the same time, the powerful were seizing the opportunity also to use this expansion in literacy, through the new popular culture, for commercial and political ends. Working in the intersection between education, cultural studies and literacies, the authors write about media literacy as a contested, under-theorised field through Hoggart’s ‘line of sight’ to provide a perspective on media literacy and working class culture today.
This reimagining of a classic work, piercingly relevant to studies of class in Britain in 2019, will be of key interest to scholars in Media Studies, as well as interested readers in Communication Studies, Literacy Studies, Cultural Studies, Politics and Sociology.
1. Who are ‘the Working Classes’?
2. Landscape with figures – a setting
3. ‘Them’ and ‘Us’
4. The ‘real’ world of people
5. The full rich life
6. Unbending the springs of action
7. Invitations to a candy-floss world: the newer mass art
8. The newer mass art: sex in shiny packets
9. Unbent springs: a note on a scepticism without tension
10. Unbent springs: a note on the uprooted and the anxious
12 Afterword by Kate Pahl
Media literacy is now established by Unesco as a human right, and the field of media literacy education is both growing and diverse. The series speaks to two recurring concerns in this field: What difference does media make to literacy and how should education respond to this? Research and practice has aimed to protect against negative media messages and deconstruct ideology through critical thinking, developing media literacy through creative production and a social participatory approach which focuses on developing active citizens to play a constructive role in media democracy.
This series is dedicated to a more extensive exploration of the known territories of media literacy and education, while also seeking out ‘other’ cartographies. As such, it encompasses a diverse, international range of contexts that share a conceptual framework at the intersection of Cultural Studies / Critical Theories, (New) Social Literacies and Critical Pedagogy. The series is especially interested in how media literacy and education relates to feminism, critical race theory, social class, post-colonial and intersectional approaches and how these perspectives, political objectives and international contexts can ‘decenter’ the field of media literacy education.
Following this, authors / editors with proposals meeting the aims and scope for the series will be invited to submit full proposals to Routledge.