“While definitions of the new middle class often include managers, employers, scientists, and technicians, the sector I would like to focus attention on is the expanding group of ´new cultural intermediaries´(see Bourdieu, 1984). There are engaged in providing symbolic goods and services that were reffered to earlier – the marketing, advertising, public relations, radio and television producers, presenters, magazine journalists, fashion writers, and the helping professions (social workers, marriage counsellors, sex therapists, dieticians, play leaders, etc.). If we look at the habitus, the classificatory schemes, and dispositions of the group we should note that Bourdieu (1984: 370) has referred to them as ´new intellectuals´who adopt a learning-mode towards life. They are fascinated by identity, presentation, appearance, lifestyle, and the endless quest for new experiences. Indeed their awareness of the range of experiences open to them, the frequent lack of anchoring in terms of a specific locale or community, coupled with the self-consciousness of the autodidact, who always wishes to become more than he/she is, leads to a refusal to be classified, with the injunction to resist fixed codes as life is conceived as essentially open-ended.
Bourdieu (1984: 371) remarks that their quest for distinction via the cultivation of lifestyle, a stylized, expressive life, ´makes available to almost everyone the distinctive poses, the distinctive games and other signs of inner riches previously reserved for intellectuals´. They actively promote and transmit the intellectuals´ lifestyle to a larger audience and collude with the intellectuals to legitimate new fields such as sport, fashion, popular music, and popular culture as valid fields of intellectual analysis. Those cultural intermediaries working between the media and academic and intellectual life help to facilitate the transmission of popular intellectual programmes in the media. […] Effectively they help to collapse some of the old distinctions and symbolic hierarchies that revolve around the popular culture/higher culture axis. This general veneration for intellectual goods and the artistic and intellectual lifestyle thus helps to create an audience within the new middle class and potentially beyond, for new symbolic goods and experiences, for the intellectual and artistic way of life, which could be receptive to some of the sensibilities that are incorporated into and disseminated in postmodernism.”

[Fonte: “Consumer culture & Postmodernism” – Mike Featherstone]

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Informazioni su Alba Chiara

I'm Alba Chiara Di Bari, a 22-year-old Italian studying a Master in Strategic Public Relations in Sweden. Love: Italian espresso, my celtic harp, my pentacle, metal/rock/folk music, my mobile.

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