Do we, as well as past generations, actually get the books and culture we deserve? Or did an elite few (read blessed or cursed with more of the resources of the day) tell the rest of us what we should like or accept as 'cultured' culture (pun intended) --- Simply and probably because someone had told them what was acceptable in their time.
Never mind growing and expanding ideas and knowledge that would certainly sway concepts and complex thought/s and therefore literature and culture. I would say this applies to both the heavier and lighter sides of literature/culture/art/books/etc..
But, back to the question: Do we actually get the books and culture we deserve?
Hell no! (Realizing there is no one answer to this question due to no one concept of culture and good/bad books).
But, it's not because of what we like, enjoy or desire (from the most educated among us to the least) --- It's because of what is jammed down our throats in the name of the almighty dollar from those in control of the business.
Alexander Nazaryan, a very entertaining book reviewer and 'culture commenter' who enjoys his commentary with heavy doses of facetious irreverence and hyperbole, writes this for the New Republic:
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