Carey, John, The Intellectuals and the Masses (London: Faber and Faber, 1992)

From Publishers Weekly:

This scathing critique argues that modernist literature and art arose as a reaction against popular culture and the mass reading public created by late 19th-century educational reforms. Oxford Enlgish professor Carey shows how intellectuals like D. H. Lawrence, Ezra Pound, W. B. Yeats, Knut Hamsun, George Gissing and Wyndham Lewis scorned "the masses" as vulgar and trivial while exalting the artist as a natural aristocrat and transmitter of timeless values. T. S. Eliot predicted that the spread of education would lead to barbarism. Charles Baudelaire condemned photography as a distraction for the "vile multitude," while other intellectuals expressed contempt for newspapers and popular entertainments. H. G. Wells proposed measures to restrict parenthood as a means to curb the "black and brown races" whom he considered inferior to whites. Carey's razor-sharp analysis is an antidote to snobbery and class prejudice in all forms.

Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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