Culture Industry 2.0: Africa, Global South, World

Acta Academica 55 (2):1-8 (2023)
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It has been the better part of a century since the appearance of Dialectic of Enlightenment, and the technologies of mass communication that Adorno and Horkheimer placed at the centre of their analysis of mass culture have altered beyond recognition, and with them the culture itself. And this in turn raises the question of the continuing relevance of the ‘culture industry’ concept. Does the contemporary culture industry still operate along the same lines that Adorno and Horkheimer charted or has it evolved to a point at which their analysis no longer applies? This special issue gathers together a broad range of theoretical approaches that address the pressing need for the analysis of the contemporary culture industry in the Global South and beyond. Through the lenses of the history and theory of Critical Theory (and African critical theory traditions) and topics including digital culture, neoliberalism and its effects, and environmental praxis, the culture industry of Adorno and Horkheimer is revisited in the spirit of renewal and positive critique.

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