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By Sheila Whiteley

How can we comprehend Christmas? What does it suggest? This booklet is a full of life advent to the examine of pop culture via one important case learn. It explores the cultural, social and historic contexts of Christmas within the united kingdom, united states and Australia, protecting such subject matters as fiction, movie, tv, paintings, newspapers and magazines, conflict, well known tune and carols. Chapters discover the ways that the construction of which means is mediated by means of the social and cultural actions surrounding Christmas (watching Christmas motion pictures, tv, listening or enticing with well known tune and carols), its courting to a collection of simple values (the idealised build of the family), social relationships (community), and the ways that ideological discourses are used and mobilised, now not least in occasions of clash, terrorism and conflict

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But what Dickens did do was to popularise what was being invented; in particular, he made material its organising ideology of charity. As Golby and Purdue say of Dickens’s novel: ‘in it Christmas becomes a bridge between the world as it is and the world as it should be’ (2000: 45). The novel points ‘to the social problems of the present and anxieties about the future’ (45). When Dickens gave a reading of the novel in Boston on Christmas Eve 1867, it produced among his American audience what we might call the novel’s ideal reader: Among the multitude that surged out of the building came a Mr and Mrs Fairbanks (the former was the head of a large-scale factory), who had journeyed from Johnsburg, Vermont, for the occasion.

10, early 1870s, J. Mansell); a girl in blue is skating on a card probably by W. 22). Robins sometimes take on the roles of naughty children. 14). Robins snowball a Father Christmas in some designs. According to Buday, robins were popular motifs from the 1850s onwards (Buday 1954: 99), with their traditional associations (some cited the legend of Christ’s blood dropping on to a robin’s breast). 7 ‘Rooti-Tooit – I’ve Got Cher’ (1859). Cartoon by John Leech. one of the first ceramic manufacturers to produce Christmas designs on their ware, in about 1861 issued one of a robin standing on a snow-covered branch, after a painting by Harrison Weir which had been illustrated in the Illustrated London News on 5 December 1858.

25). The accompanying verse begins ‘Merrily, merrily, to and fro, / Under the holly and mistletoe’, and ends ‘Dear, dear CHRISTMAS! come ever so’. The enduring and reassuring trimmings associated with Christmas were all part of the child’s eye vision reproduced in Victorian Christmas cards. Holly and ivy had been associated with the old winter solstice and mistletoe was linked with the Druids and Norse mythology, when former enemies sealed their reconciliation with a kiss beneath it. Holly and mistletoe had first appeared in the 1840s – for example, on the Egley card – and continued to be popular decorative motifs on letters, magazine titles and simple cards.

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