Iconic

"Iconic" redirects here. For the EP by Icona Pop, see Iconic (EP).


A cultural icon is an object that represents some aspect of the values, norms or ideals perceived to be inherent in a culture, or section of a culture. Cultural icons vary widely, and may include objects like telephone boxes, aircraft, and buildings, or indeed real or fictional people.

Status

The values, norms and ideals represented by a cultural icon vary both among people who subscribe to it, and more widely among other people who may interpret cultural icons as symbolising quite different values. Thus an apple pie is a cultural icon of the United States, but Americans may not agree on what it symbolises. The term has varying meanings; it is described by Dr Mike Parker as the "contested and poorly defined subject area of cultural iconicity".[1] In Russia, nesting sets of matryoshka dolls have been popular toys since 1892, but are seen internationally as cultural icons of Russia.[2]

Examples


For example, widely accepted cultural icons of the United Kingdom include:

Cultural icons in general can be of almost any kind, for example human, such as the figure of the female athlete;[14] film characters, such as Superman;[15] animals such as the horse;[16] aspects of science, such as DNA;[17] disasters, such as the loss of the Titanic;[18] books, such as Plato's Timaeus;[19] or types of boat, such as the oriental Dhow.[20]

Media overuse

Some writers say that the terms "icon" and "iconic" have been overused. A writer in Liverpool Daily Post calls "iconic" "a word that makes my flesh creep," a word "pressed into service to describe almost anything."[21] The Christian Examiner nominates "iconic" in its list of overused words, finding over 18,000 "iconic" references in news stories alone, with another 30,000 for "icon", including its use for SpongeBob SquarePants.[22]

References

Bibliography

  • *

External links

  • The Daily Telegraph
  • The Age
  • British Postal Museum & Archive: Icons of England
  • Culture24: Icons of England

Template:Culture

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.