No More Middlebrow Culture
David Brooks, The NY Times OpEd's token conservative, writes today about middlebrow culture in the late 1950's and early 1960's:
... an educated person was expected to know something about opera, even if that person had no prospect of actually seeing one...
Brooks claims that middlebrow culture received mortal blows that came from opposite directions:
Intellectuals objected to the earnest and optimistic middle-class arrivistes who were tromping over everything and dumbing down their turf... Readers felt less of a need to go outside themselves to absorb works of art as a means of self-improvement... Less Rembrandt, more Me. Fewer theologians, more dietitians.