This clear, lively book approaches its subject using the
traditional methods of cultural anthropology--in-depth interviews
with "native" informants, examination of "native" sources, and
analysis of "native" rites of passage. In this unique case,
however, the native consultants are Americans and the focus is the
arts that they produce and enjoy. True to anthropology's hallmark
relativism, the author explores not only the fine arts but also the
popular arts, giving as much attention and analysis to wedding
cakes, rock and roll, and automobiles as to gallery paintings,
classical music, and formal literature. Specifically, coverage
includes an introduction to the book's central aim; The Role of Art
in Americans' Lives; Art in an American Rite of Passage: Weddings;
What does art do in America?; Who put the "Bomp" in the "Bomp,
Bomp, Bomp"?; The Real Art World; and Calliope in America. For
professionals in the fields of Art and Anthropology seeking a
focused study of American Arts/Aesthetics and Popular Culture.
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