Introduction (Matthew Arnold's "Culture and Anarchy") (Critical Essay)
Post Script, 2009, Wntr-Spring, 28, 2
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We tend to think of the consumer society as a creation of the 20th Century, when in fact the rapidly expanding British Empire of the mid-19th Century was creating much the same thing. A vigorous worldwide exchange of goods was changing the lives of haves and have-nots alike. The so-called "lower orders" may have had a paltry share of the overstuffed prosperity enjoyed by their "betters," but the materialist tide was raising all ships. Even the poor were awash in cheap goods and forms of amusement. Despite a rigidly defined class society, there was some sloshing back and forth, enough for perceived erosion of the difference between "high" and "low" to elicit Matthew Arnold's classic essay of 1869, "Culture and Anarchy." That eminent critic of English society and politics defined culture as "the best that has been thought and said in the world" (6). This being Victorian England, the best had to have a mission, hence Arnold's claim that high culture's purpose was "to make reason and the will of God prevail" (42).
- 2,99 €
- Category: Business & Personal Finance
- Published: 01 January 2009
- Publisher: Post Script, Inc.
- Print Length: 12 Pages
- Language: English