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James Lileks and I bring you a Thanksgiving surprise, the browsing rant and ranting browsing through middlebrow & midcentury America. We’ve got lots to offer:
- Cultural archaeology and commercial archaeology–our fascination with what life was like in America before.
- Hitchcock and the movies as inadvertent documentaries.
- The great fracturing in the ’50s: Freudianism–youthful alienation–smarmy rebels you want to slap the cool out of–The Heiress (1949)–Monty Clift–Henry James.
- The collapse of the culture, as work of the most successful classes, who most should have defended their taste and habits.
- Middlebrow is inescapable, but inherently unstable. Technology pulls us in the direction of progress, but a sense of taste makes us want to bring back some formalities, mores, and pleasures that depend on us all doing the same thing…. We cannot tolerate too much imposition on our freedom, but so soon as we make small concessions to comfort or whim, a deluge follows.
If you share the passion for cultural-commercial archaeology, make sure to visit lileks.com!