The Spike Lee Enigma: Challenge and Incorporation in Media Culture by Bill YousmanThe Spike Lee Enigma: Challenge and Incorporation in Media Culture by Bill Yousman

The Spike Lee Enigma: Challenge and Incorporation in Media Culture

byBill Yousman

Hardcover | September 29, 2014

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 585 plum® points

Ships within 1-3 weeks

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


The Spike Lee Enigma is an exploration of ideology and political economy in the films and career of one of America's most controversial filmmakers. Since the 1980s Spike Lee has created numerous films that are socially challenging, some would even say radical, while simultaneously maintaining a collaborative relationship with mainstream Hollywood and the global advertising industry. Lee, thus, seemingly represents an enigma – operating on the margins of both hegemonic and counter-hegemonic cultural production.
This book incorporates multiple perspectives, ranging from media effects theories, critical cultural studies, and the political economy of media, to semiotics and ideological, auteurist, and feminist approaches to film theory and analysis. Early chapters provide a clear explanation of these theoretical and methodological approaches while later chapters explore several of Lee’s films in great depth. In a social environment where popular culture has supplanted education and religion as a primary force of socialization and enculturation, this book demonstrates why a popular filmmaker such as Spike Lee must be taken seriously, while introducing readers to ways of viewing, reading, and listening that will allow them to achieve a new understanding of the mediated texts they encounter on a daily basis.
Bill Yousman, PhD, teaches in the Communication Department at Central Connecticut State University. He has published numerous essays on media literacy education and popular culture and the construction of ideology in peer-reviewed journals and anthologies. His book, Prime Time Prisons on U.S. TV: Representation of Incarceration, was pu...
Title:The Spike Lee Enigma: Challenge and Incorporation in Media CultureFormat:HardcoverDimensions:9.06 × 5.91 × 0.98 inPublished:September 29, 2014Publisher:Peter Lang Inc., International Academic PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1433121492

ISBN - 13:9781433121494

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

Contents: The American Film Industry, Race, and Spike Lee – Theory and Method: Media Culture, Ideology, and Spike Lee – She’s Gotta Have It, but He Already Got It – The Undecidability of Doing the Right Thing – Lee Goes Big: Identity and Ideology in the Epic Malcolm X – Spike Lee and the Paradox of the Alternative Mainstream – The Mainstreaming (?) of Spike Lee: Challenge and Incorporation.

Editorial Reviews

«‘The Spike Lee Enigma’ argues for the major significance of Spike Lee's films, while addressing the controversies in reception and critique of his work. The book catches the contradictions of Lee’s œuvre and should provoke new and lively debate.» (Douglas Kellner, George F. Kneller Chair in the Philosophy of Education, UCLA) «Yousman deploys an impressive range of scholarly and journalistic sources, using them to develop his arguments and probe the reception of Lee’s films. [This book’s] multilayered examination of Lee's films and their social, cultural, political, and psychological contexts and implications is unsurpassed in any single Lee study to date.» (David Sterritt, Columbia University, author of ‘Spike Lee’s America’)