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Representation
Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices

Second Edition
Edited by:


May 2013 | 440 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Since 1997 Representation has been the go-to textbook for students learning the tools to question and critically analyze institutional and media texts and images. This long-awaited second edition:

• updates and refreshes the approaches to representation, signalling key developments in the field

• addresses the emergence of new technologies, media formats, politics and theories

• includes an entirely new chapter on celebrity culture and reality TV

• offers new exercises, readings, images and examples for a new generation of students

This book once again provides an indispensible resource for students and teachers in cultural and media studies.

Stuart Hall
THE WORK OF REPRESENTATION
 
Representation, Meaning and Language
Making Meaning, Representing Things

 
Language and Representation

 
Sharing the Codes

 
Theories of Representation

 
The Language of Traffic Lights

 
Summary

 
 
Saussure's Legacy
The Social Part of Language

 
Critique of Saussure's Model

 
Summary

 
 
From Language to Culture: Linguistics to Semiotics
Myth Today

 
 
Discourse, Power and the Subject
From Language to Discourse

 
Historicizing Discourse: Discursive Practices

 
From Discourse to Power/Knowledge

 
Summary: Foucault and Representation

 
Charcot and the Performance of Hysteria

 
 
Where is the 'Subject'?
How to Make Sense of Velasquez' Las Meninas

 

The Subject of/in Representation

 
 
Conclusion: Representation, Meaning and Language Reconsidered
READING A: Norman Bryson, 'Language, reflection and still life'

 
READING B: Roland Barthes, 'The world of wrestling'

 
READING C: Roland Barthes, 'Myth today'

 
READING D: Roland Barthes, 'Rhetoric of the image'

 
READING E: Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, New reflections on the revolution of our time

 
READING F: Elaine Showalter, 'The performance of hysteria'

 
Frances Bonner
RECORDING REALITY: DOCUMENTARY FILM AND TELEVISION
 
Introduction
 
What Do We Mean By 'Documentary'?
Non-fiction Texts

 
Defining Documentary

 
 
Types of Documentary
Categorising Documentary

 
Alternative Categories

 
Ethical Documentary Film-making

 
 
Dramatisation and the Documentary
Scripting and Re-enactment in the Documentary

 
Docudrama

 
 
Documentary - An Historic Genre?
'Postdocumentary'?

 
Docusoaps

 
Reality TV

 
 
Natural History Documentaries
Documenting Animal Life

 
 
Conclusion
READING A: Nichols Bill, 'The Qualities of Voice'

 
READING B: John Corner, 'Performing the real: documentary diversions'

 
READING C: Derek Bousé, 'Historia Fabulosus'

 
Henrietta Lidchi
THE POETICS AND THE POLITICS OF EXHIBITING OTHER CULTURES
 
Introduction
 
Establishing Definitions, Negotiating Meanings, Discerning Objects
Introduction

 
What is a 'Museum'?

 
What is an 'Ethnographic Museum'?

 
Objects and Meanings

 
The Uses of Text

 
Questions of Context

 
Summary

 
 
Fashioning Cultures: The Poetics of Exhibiting
Introduction

 
Introducing Paradise

 

Paradise Regained

 
Structuring Paradise

 

Paradise: The Exhibit as Artefact

 
The Myths of Paradise

 

Summary

 
 
Captivating Cultures: The Politics of Exhibiting
Introduction

 
Knowledge and Power

 
Displaying Others

 
Museums and the Construction of Culture

 
Colonial Spectacles

 
Summary

 
 
Devising New Models: Museums and Their Futures
Introduction

 
Anthropology and Colonial Knowledge

 
The Writing of Anthropological Knowledge

 
Collections as Partial Truths

 
Museums and Contact Zones

 
Art, Artefact and Ownership

 
 
Conclusion
READING A: John Tradescant the younger, 'Extracts from the Musaeum Tradescantianum'

 
READING B: Elizabeth A. Lawrence, 'His very silence speaks: the horse who survived Custer's Last Stand'

 
READING C: Michael O'Hanlon, 'Paradise: portraying the New Guinea Highlands'

 
READING D: James Clifford, 'Paradise'

 
READING E: Annie E. Coombes, 'Material culture at the crossroads of knowledge: the case of the Benin "bronzes'"

 
READING F: John Picton, 'To see or Not To See! That is the Question'

 
Stuart Hall
THE SPECTACLE OF THE 'OTHER'
 
Introduction
Heroes or Villains?

 
Why Does 'Difference' Matter?

 
 
Racializing the 'Other'
Commodity Racism: Empire and the Domestic World

 
Meanwhile, Down on the Plantation ...

 
Signifying Racial 'Difference'

 
 
Staging Racial 'Difference': 'And the Melody Lingered On...'
Heavenly Bodies

 
 
Stereotyping as a Signifying Practice
Representation, Difference and Power

 
Power and Fantasy

 
Fetishism and Disavowal

 
 
Contesting a Recialized Regime of Representation
Reversing the Stereotypes

 
Positive and Negative Images

 
Through the Eye of Representation

 
 
Conclusion
READING A: Anne McClintock, 'Soap and commodity spectacle'

 
READING B: Richard Dyer, 'Africa'

 
READING C: Sander Gilman, 'The deep structure of stereotypes'

 
READING D: Kobena Mercer, 'Reading racial fetishism'

 
Sean Nixon
EXHIBITING MASCULINITY
 
Introduction
 
Conceptualizing Masculinity
Plural Masculinities

 
Thinking Relationally

 
Invented Categories

 
Summary

 
 
Discourse and Representation
Discourse, Power/Knowledge and the Subject

 
 
Visual Codes of Masculinity
'Street Style'

 
'Italian-American'

 
'Conservative Englishness'

 
Summary

 
 
Spectatorship and Subjectivization
Psychoanalysis and Subjectivity

 
Spectatorship

 
The Spectacle of Masculinity

 
The Problem with Psychoanalysis and Film Theory

 
Techniques of the Self

 
 
Consumption and Spectatorship
Sites of Representation

 
Just Looking

 
Spectatorship, Consumption and the 'New Man'

 
 
Conclusion
READING A: Steve Neale, 'Masculinity as spectacle'

 
READING B: Sean Nixon, 'Technologies of looking: retailing and the visual'

 
Christine Gledhill with Vicky Ball
GENRE AND GENDER: THE CASE OF SOAP OPERA
 
Introduction
 
Representation and Media Fictions
Fiction and Everyday Life

 
Fiction as Entertainment

 
But is it Good For You?

 
 
Mass Culture and Gendered Culture
Women's Culture and Men's Culture

 
Images of Women vs. Real Women

 
Entertainment as a Capitalist Industry

 
Dominant Ideology, Hegemony and Cultural Negotiation

 
The Gendering of Cultural Forms: High Culture vs. Mass Culture

 
 
Genre, Representation and Soap Opera
The Genre System

 
The Genre Product

 
Genre and Mass-produced Fiction

 
Genre as Standardization and Differentiation

 
The Genre Product as Text

 
Genres and Binary Differences

 
Genre Boundaries

 
Signification and Reference

 
Cultural Verisimilitude, Generic Gerisimilitude and Realism

 
Media Production and Struggles for Hegemony

 
Summary

 
 
Genres for Women: Te Case of Soap Opera
Genre, Soap Opera and Gender

 
The Invention of Soap Opera

 
Women's Culture

 
Soap Opera as Women's Genre

 
Soap Opera's Binary Oppositions

 
Serial Form and Gender Representation

 
Soap Opera's Address to the Female Audience

 
Talk vs. Action

 
Soap Opera's Serial World

 
Textual Address and the Construction of Subjects

 
The Ideal Spectator

 
Female Reading Competence

 
Cultural Competence and the Implied Reader of the Text

 
The Social Audience

 
 
Conclusion
Soap Opera: A Woman's Form No More?

 
Dissolving Genre Boundaries and Gendered Negotiations

 
READING A: Tania Modleski, 'The search for tomorrow in today's soap operas'

 
READING B: Charlotte Brunsdon, 'Crossroads: notes on soap opera'

 
READING C: Su Holmes and Deborah Jermyn 'Why not Wife Swap?

 
 
Index

This is simply a magnificent collection of chapters, laced together under the guiding light of Stuart Hall's outstanding scholarship. The chapters each exemplify the very best modes of cultural studies writing, theoretically informed, lucid, vividly alive and relevant to students and to general readers across the arts, humanities and social sciences. New material by Stuart Hall is particularly welcome, and will be much appreciated given his key role in the development of post-colonial as well as cultural studies. In particular we see Hall lay out the conceptual groundwork for an extensive study of the media from the viewpoint of 'race' and ethnicity.
Angela McRobbie
Professor of Communications, Goldsmiths, University of London


The second edition of Representation should enable it to speak to new generations of students and to continue to serve as the authoritative introduction to the theories and politics of meaning and representation in cultural studies. Anyone interested in these matters, whether student, teacher or simply curious intellect, will be glad for the time spent reading this book.
Lawrence Grossberg
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, Senior Editor of the journal Cultural Studies


Essential reading for my students. Clear and informative

Ms Denise Mac Giolla Ri
Department of Humanities, Athlone Institute of Technology
March 15, 2019

This book covers a range of critical tourism/representational/social topic areas with great care, sophistication and insight. Fantastic read.

Ms Rukeya Suleman
Accounting , Bedfordshire University
September 22, 2016

The book covers the points I intended to teach in my course. It is clearly and lucidly written with ample examples. I would strongly recommend this book for my students.

Mr Mohammad Khalid Yaseen
Accounting , ADNOC ATI
January 15, 2016

Still a valuable foundational text in cultural studies.

Mr Damian Hughes
Art and Design, Staffordshire University
December 15, 2015

Perfect reader for Political Sociology

Dr Jacek Kornak
Dept of Psychology,Sociology & Soc Wrk, University Campus Suffolk
November 9, 2015

How do cultures meet, and what images of culture do we rely on to inform those differences across distances? These are some of the very real issues student face in addressing living and working across cultures. This text is helpful as a reference guide to understanding popular culture, and therefore media more broadly.

Dr Diepiriye Kuku-Siemons
Northampton Business School, Northampton University
June 29, 2015

Great book but covers only a little of what we look at. It has very relevant chapters for our studies.

Mr FRED HANNAH
Media Studies, Cardonald College
May 19, 2015

The module will not be running in the academic session 2015-16. Next time it does, I will use the book as supplemental reading - as it was used in 2014-15. The book is comprehensive and accessible for students - a great text.

Dr Carol Ekinsmyth
Dept of Geography, Portsmouth University
February 27, 2015

Hall's work has, in the past few years, risen to become an instrumental account of the cultural and symbolic nature of social interactions underlying the very ways in which we understand our world. This volume is true to his heritage: precise, in-depth, and recommended for all, both the experienced and the novice.

Professor Pedro Neto
Audiovisual and Multimedia, School of Communication and Media
February 21, 2015

Sample Materials & Chapters

Representation: The Work of Representation


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