The Rise Of Mass Culture

2019 Words9 Pages
Mass culture can be defined as the collective culture created by exposure to the same news sources, music, literature, art and consumer advertising. The rise of mass culture is a relatively new phenomenon that has occurred largely because of the rise of a leisure class fueled by technological innovations, the surplus in production brought about by the industrial revolution and the time the average consumer had to dedicate to non-work pursuits brought about by the delineated work schedule favored by mass production and labor laws which defined the limits of the production schedule, and created a new space for workers and their families. Prior to the advent of mass culture, “high culture” was defined by the elite classed made up of landed and hereditary wealth which defined the proper forms of cultural expression and used control of the access to this culture to define in-group identification and signal cultural cues which were to be picked up and mimicked by the lower classes. The monopoly on cultural expression changed with the advent of the mass production of goods which were made affordable by the sheer scale of their manufacture and the necessity to create awareness of this production surplus means of communication on a scale heretofore unseen in human history. The rise of mass culture was also made possible by the urbanization of societies as nations transitioned from predominantly agrarian societies to ones based on manufacturing and service. This
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