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Kulturbetriebslehre. Grundlagen einer Inter-Disziplin

By Tasos Zembylas

VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, Wiesbaden, 2004, 373 pages, € 39.90, ISBN: 3-531-14314-X

Culture Institutions Studies (the rough translation for "Kulturbetriebslehre") is occupied with (1) the formation of cultural goods as meaningful symbolic entities and their transformation into cultural commodities, (2) the analysis of cultural practices and their institutional frames that constitute and regulate the formation of cultural goods and services, (3) the examination of the specific characteristics of culture institutions as organisational settings and (4) the social organisation of cultural labour and other cultural activities e.g. consumption. The book aims at synthesising a sociological, cultural studies and economic approach to cultural goods and services and therefore discusses various topics and methodological aspects that are crucial to this particular conception of Culture Institutions Studies.

The author emphasises the role of the practical framework (conventions, rules, institutions) in the process of formation and dissemination of values, preferences and judgements. Another important insight is the interpretation of cultural goods as res publica. This publication represents the first original attempt at a broader view of Culture Institutions Studies. Incisive philosophical investigations accompanied by illuminating examples enforce a fundamental re-conceptualisation of contemporary debates on issues affecting the cultural sector.


Tasos Zembylas is associate professor of Culture Institutions Studies at the Institute of Culture Management and Culture Studies of the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna. He is the Director of the graduate course for culture management. See www.mdw.ac.at/ikm or contact embylas@mdw.ac.at