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Feast of Excess – A Cultural History of the New Sensibility - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Feast of Excess: A Cultural History of the New Sensibility

George Cotkin


This book is a cultural history of the New Sensibility in America. The New Sensibility was about excess, pushing cultural boundaries, taking chances, going to extremes. Such excess could take two tendencies: a bare-bones minimalism, or a riotous maximalism. The common focus was on sexual liberation, madness, violence, spontaneity, confession, and undermining divisions between high and low culture and between performer and audience. The vignette organization of succinct chapters allows a wide range of cultural creators to be examined within the context of their biographies and the historical mo ... More

Keywords: the New sensibility, literature, art, photography, American culture, music, John Cage, Susan Sontag, American history, American studies

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780190218478
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190218478.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

George Cotkin, author
Professor Emeritus, California Polytechnic State University, San Obispo