Value and culture
in Cultural value in twenty-first-century England
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This chapter explores the extent to which the narratives and the uses of metaphor that structure the terms of the value equation in 'Shakespeare' are also relevant to an account of the value of culture. The narratives, metaphors and abstractions that structured accounts of 'culture' in the twentieth century were the source of both its strength and its weaknesses. As Adam Kuper has shown, the politics of a homogenised idea of culture that elided practices and objects with groups could as easily be used for oppressive as for egalitarian political purposes. The critique of the ethically positive view of culture was co-ordinated by an association committed to women's rights. Henrietta Moore's discussion of the role of knowledge in the process of cultural change offers a useful analytical model with which to understand the conflict over cultural value as it occurs in twenty-first-century England.

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