Contribution of Raymond Williams to Cultural Studies

Finally, it allows us to better understand social practices, the strategies of the actors and the various forms of protest and resistance. Anthropology helps us to expand the magnifying glass of research, seeking to identify a hidden discourse made up of linguistic, gestural and practical manifestations that circulate outside the public sphere. This complicates the relationship between dominant culture and popular culture, focusing on the different forms of interpretation of the expressions of the dominant culture, crossed by the thought structures of the popular sectors, which often go against the grain of what is expected. with the imposition of an official discourse.7

We are interested in recovering Raymond Williams from cultural studies and E.P. Thompson from the social historiography because we consider that they constitute an example in articulating the Gramscian perspective with the contributions of the ethnographic look before indicated. Making a complete reading of Williams’s work, we find that in all his productions -in the analysis of language, cultural artifacts, artistic expressions- he has sought to retrace the inseparable link of these dimensions with the material conditions of existence, and has sought to interpret through these symbolic expressions the perceptions and feelings of the actors.

Williams’ studies constitute an advance in the materialist study of culture that begins with Gramsci; nevertheless, there is a central plan of the concerns that guide the project of the Italian intellectual that the English author does not contemplate: how a collective subject of change is constructed. This concern, however, is recovered by E.P. Thompson, who investigates the formation of the English working class by showing the active role of workers, with their culture and values, in their own formation as a class (Meiksins Wood, 1983). Thompson helps us reverse the questioning. Instead of asking ourselves, why do people protest? seeks to know what people do when they are hungry By reversing the theoretical question, from an anthropological perspective, it allows us to explore the framework of social relations, in the forms of politicization of everyday life to understand the forms of resistance, the construction of identities and the emergence of collective subjects.

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  1. 2017

    […] Previous story Contribution of Raymond Williams to Cultural Studies […]

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