Fellow Poetics members:
Here are some readings that should help introduce you to the concept of the imagined community, cultural economy, commodity fetishism, and mechanical reproduction. Each of these terms will prove useful to our study of Poetics in the Global Political Economy. Each member is encouraged to read these documents in order to enrich the discussions we will have with one another throughout the year.
Our first reading is by Walter Benjamin. His essay "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" is one of the most important writings on the subject of art, the work of art, and the way that poetics can be understood.
Here is the link to this reading: The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction
Benedict Anderson is interested in the way that nations become powerful organizing forces. His introduction to his book, Imagined Communities, is a great way to learn how we begin to create communities, and more importantly, how we forge strong relationships within those communities.
Although there are many readings from Karl Marx to choose from, this one helps us understand the power of commoditization. This is an essential reader for anyone who wants to understand how consumption patters form in relation to mass production.
Arjun Appadurai, in his article "Difference and Disjuncture in the Global Cultural Economy" helped make the term "cultural geography" a common part of academic discourse. In this article, he describes the forces of globalization as they relate to the circumstances to produce culture. Culture is a dynamic force, ever changing, and difficult to define. As we think about culture and economy, it's important to understand how to think beyond the rigidity of most discussions that include culture. Here is a good starting point: