Culture and Anarchy

Culture and Anarchy : An Essay in Political and Social Criticism

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By the middle of the nineteenth century, culture was often considered to be nothing but a meaningless 'smattering of Latin and Greek'. In this work, first published in 1869, Matthew Arnold (1822-88) redefines culture as a striving for 'the best that has been thought or said', and as a contrast to 'philistinism' and the over-valuation of the practical. Critical of the uninspiring lifestyles of many of his religious and non-religious contemporaries, he raises the controversial issue of how to lead a good life, aesthetically, intellectually and morally. He introduces a middle road between classical and Judaeo-Christian ideals ('Hellenism' and 'Hebraism') which promotes the state over the individual, a position that has often prompted his critics to consider him an authoritarian thinker. A fascinating piece of social and political criticism, and an adjunct to Arnold's poetry, this work was both controversial when it was first published, and enormously influential more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1139136445
  • 9781139136440

Table of contents

Preface; Culture and more

Rating details

701 ratings
3.48 out of 5 stars
5 20% (138)
4 30% (211)
3 34% (235)
2 13% (88)
1 4% (29)
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