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  1. 1. Stuart Hall and the Birmingham SchoolIn the Anglo-Australian tradition of Cultural Studies, the British BirminghamSchool was a key intervention.Encoding/decoding, resistance, hegemony, homology, style - these and otherconcepts were either invented or popularized by Stuart Hall (the Director ofthe School in its decisive period of intervention) and his students. Thestudents now read like a roll call of the great and the good in Cultural Studies:Dick Hebdige, Larry Grossberg, Angela McRobbie, Paul Willis, Paul Gilroy,Greg McLennan, David Morley, Chas Critcher and many others. It was aheady moment in the birth of a new field which we now call Cultural Studies.Its influence has been immense and is ongoing, since many of theBirmingham graduates are Professors who continue to lecture and write aboutculture.This lecture aims to provide a critical assessment of Hall and the BirminghamSchool. It will exploit and develop arguments set out in my book Stuart Hall(Polity 2003), as well as reactions to the book from the Birmingham circle andothers.