Facts and fiction 1

August 8, 2003

While sympathetic to Catherine Belsey's desire to "end the apartheid" between English and cultural studies (Why I, THES , July 18), a more pressing issue might be to discover what fuels it. As a product of the 1980s "theory revolution", I am amazed that "English" - in its unreconstructed form - still exists. Market and ideological forces are clearly at work. It will be fascinating to see if the cultural theory approach to literature (dependent on a highly competitive "open market" for publications and student recruitment) or more traditional literary scholarship (dependent on university presses and research council funding) wins out.

Lynne Pearce
Lancaster University

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