2014 saw the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Birmingham Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies. This project, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, marks this anniversary by reflecting on the legacies of the Centre.
Using innovative teaching and research methods and often adopting a politicised engagement with subjects, the Centre was one of the first academic bodies to take ‘mass’ culture – pop music, television programmes, fashions – seriously.
By staging an exhibition at the Midlands Art Centre (10 May- 29 June 2014) and conference at the University of Birmingham (24 -25 June 2014), this project sought to learn more about the Centre’s research and practices and the way it helped to shape the development of an international discipline. It also resulted in the creation of an archive of CCCS material housed at the University of Birmingham.
In May 2015 a new strand of the project began. This focuses on the collection of 3000 photographs taken by CCCS student Janet Mendelsohn as part of her studies, which she donated to the archive in 2014. A series of events will take the photographs back out into Birmingham’s communities, using them as the basis for public conversation and reflection.
On this website you can find more about the CCCS Mendelsohn project, the wider archive, browse selected Centre publications, listen to interviews with prominent figures from the CCCS, 'meet' the project team, and learn more about the wider project.