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The Genes of Culture

Towards a Theory of Symbols, Meaning and Media, Volume 1

Series:

Christine L. Nystrom

Edited By Carolyn Wiebe and Susan Maushart

Christine L. Nystrom’s provocative work offers up a fresh approach to ongoing—and increasingly urgent—questions about the role of symbols and technology in shaping human experience. In lucid, lively and always-accessible prose, she examines an eclectic range of topics—from Hopi grammar to the etiquette of beach-going to the primal allure of the horror film—to uncover the principles that structure the way we make meaning of our world. A cross-disciplinary tour-de-force, The Genes of Culture integrates insights from philosophy, the physical sciences, social psychology and cultural criticism to pose challenging questions for today’s students of media. An exemplary foundation reader for graduates or undergraduates in communication and media studies.

Christine L. Nystrom was a professor of media and communication in the Media Ecology program at New York University for over 30 years. She is regarded as one of the founders of that field, alongside her colleague Neil Postman.