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Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries

Abstract

Purpose

Cultural intermediaries define the standards many consumers use when evaluating cultural products. Yet, little research has focused on whether cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other with regard to the standards they emphasize. The purpose of this paper is to build on Bourdieu’s theory of cultural production to examine how the type of subfield reviewed and/or the cultural intermediary’s expertise (or “field-specific cultural capital”) affect the standards an intermediary uses.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper employed a computer-aided content analysis of the full corpus of “Rolling Stone” music album reviews (1967-2014).

Findings

Critics with lower field-specific cultural capital reflect the same logic as the subfield they are critiquing. Critics with higher field-specific cultural capital reflect the opposite logic.

Research limitations/implications

Bourdieu was ambivalent about whether cultural intermediaries will reflect the logic of a subfield. Results show that the answer depends on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. The results also reinforce previous findings that individuals with high field-specific cultural capital are more likely to break with the logic of a field.

Practical implications

Not all intermediaries are created equal. Producers and consumers who rely on cultural intermediaries should understand the intermediary’s critical analysis within the context of his/her experience.

Originality/value

This is one of the first studies to examine how a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital impacts his or her work. The findings are based on a large review sample and include reviewers’ analyses as they developed from having lower to higher field-specific cultural capital.

Keywords

Citation

Corciolani, M., Grayson, K. and Humphreys, A. (2020), "Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 54 No. 3, pp. 478-510. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Matteo Corciolani, Kent Grayson and Ashlee Humphreys.

License

Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode


1. Introduction

When determining the value of a product or service, consumers do not rely only on their personal judgment or on information about the producer. Consumers also frequently consult information from people who are experts in the product or service category. Scholars refer to these experts as “cultural intermediaries” – a term that includes theater critics (Shrum, 1991), advertising agencies (Gurrieri et al., 2016), bartenders (Ocejo, 2012), food marketers (Jamal, 2003), television programming buyers (Kuipers, 2012), fashion models (Lonergan et al., 2018), restaurant guides (Lane, 2019), personal trainers (Maguire, 2008), fundraisers (Banks, 2019), book publishers (Childress, 2012) and music critics (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005). Although these various professional roles differ from one another in many ways, they all serve the function of helping consumers understand and evaluate what a producer has created. As a result, success or failure in a market often depends on a cultural intermediary’s interpretation and influence (Humphreys and Carpenter, 2018; Shrum, 1991). Some producers therefore carefully consider the potential influence of cultural intermediaries when developing their products and services (Booth and Matic, 2011). But, what drives a cultural intermediary’s appraisals? Do intermediaries tend to apply standards that are similar to the standards used in the domains they are critiquing or do they apply different standards? This is not only an important practical question for companies and producers that rely on the cultural intermediaries’ evaluations but also an interesting theoretical question for those interested in theories of cultural production (Bourdieu,1971/1985, 1993).

This paper proposes that the answers to these questions depend on the level of experience (or “field-specific cultural capital”) a cultural intermediary has. The results of an automated text analysis of music album reviews from a major music magazine show that, when considering the authenticity of artists and their music, critics with low field-specific cultural capital use standards that are similar to the standards of the artists they are critiquing. In contrast, those with high field-specific cultural capital differentiate by applying different standards. These findings shed light on the status patterns that drive critics who, in turn, shape the cultural conversation that drives markets.

2. Theoretical framework: fields, cultural intermediaries and cultural capital

Throughout his career, sociologist Pierre Bourdieu (1969, 1971/1985, 1984, 1992/1995) developed and refined a unified framework for analyzing and understanding cultural products such as films, classical music and popular music. This paper uses Bourdieu’s framework as a lens for understanding and analyzing cultural intermediaries and for guiding the project’s key research questions. In Section 2.1, we review a central element of Bourdieu’s theoretical perspective – the concept of a field. In Section 2.2, we explain that, according to Bourdieu, fields tend to be divided into two subfields, each with different standards. One subfield focuses on popularity and economic success, whereas the other focuses on the status within the subfield. Section 2.3 reviews research on cultural intermediaries – people and organizations who mediate between those who produce cultural products and those who are the target audience for these products. Here we introduce our central research purpose, which is to examine whether cultural intermediaries mirror the standards of the subfield they are interpreting or follow a different logic.

In Section 2.4, we review Bourdieu’s concept of cultural capital and suggest that the answer to the question posed in Section 2.3 may depend on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Lastly, in Section 2.5 we explain how a cultural intermediary’s standards for a cultural product (and particularly the product’s authenticity) may depend on his or her field-specific cultural capital and the type of subfield whose cultural products the intermediary interprets.

2.1 Bourdieu’s concept of fields of cultural production

Bourdieu developed his framework for understanding and analyzing cultural products because he was dissatisfied with the two well-established approaches that critics tended to use at the time. One approach was to focus on a cultural product’s inherent characteristics, usually in comparison to similar works. Bourdieu thought that these “internal readings” of cultural products ignored the influential historical and social factors that affect the product’s creation (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 178). Another approach focused on the influence of social and historical factors, but Bourdieu felt that this “external mode of analysis” did not sufficiently consider the producer’s personal autonomy (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 180). Bourdieu therefore sought to develop an analytic perspective that simultaneously incorporated the influence of social/historical influences, personal factors and attributes of the work of art itself (Bourdieu,1986/1993).

Bourdieu’s solution was to introduce the concept of a “field” (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992). A field is a domain of activity in which people compete with each other for desirable resources. Examples of fields include fashion (Dolbec and Fischer, 2015), religion (McAlexander et al., 2014), advertising (Chávez, 2012), indie consumption (Arsel and Thompson, 2011) and commercial music (Anand and Peterson, 2000). When explaining the concept of a field, Bourdieu and those building on his work sometimes use the metaphor of a game: For instance, they describe those participating in the field as “players” trying to win competitively against each other and who must follow a set of “rules” to “win” the game, where winning means achieving key benefits such as status, material resources and/or social connections (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992; Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Drumwright and Kamal, 2016; Lonergan et al., 2018). Because different fields have different rules and are differentially likely to lead to particular benefits, each field will naturally attract different players – frequently those who are suitably qualified for competition in the field. Consequently, the players who compete in each field tend to have similar backgrounds (or “habitus”), similar goals (or “stakes”) and a common understanding of the rules of the game (or “doxa”). In Warren and Dinnie’s (2018, p. 303) words:

Fields are formed from networks of social relations; they are competitive environments in which social actors leverage their own habitus to compete for placement – for economic, cultural, social and symbolic power.

The concept of a field, which has been applied to many domains beyond cultural production, solves the analytic problems that Bourdieu identified with previous approaches to analyzing cultural products: A field simultaneously considers not only social and historical factors (because these factors strongly influence the field participants’ habitus and understanding of the field’s doxa) but also personal agency (because people are free to pursue their personal strategies within the doxa) and the characteristics of the works themselves (which are understood in relation to each other and in relation to habitus and doxa).

For example, in February 2019, the female pop singer, Arianna Grande, released a number-one song in the USA. called “Thank U Next.” According to Bourdieu, a full and accurate understanding of this song requires identifying the other players in the field in which Grande is competing, becoming acquainted with the backgrounds and upbringings of these players, characterizing the personal and professional relationships among them and specifying the positions each has taken in the field with their activities – a specification that requires comparing and contrasting the works of art that each player has produced (Bourdieu,1986/1993, pp. 183-184). This approach might reveal, for example, that “Thank U Next” was successful because:

  • It is musically similar to previous hit songs by Dua Lipa and Camilla Cabello (other players in the field).

  • The song references themes regarding the empowerment of women that are personally important to artists in this field (their backgrounds and upbringing).

  • It incorporates lyrics that are more specifically personal than the works by other artists in the field (the characteristics of the works themselves).

2.2 The subfields of cultural production: two logics, two sets of standards

Bourdieu proposed and observed that, as players compete in a field, they are likely to coalesce into two subfields (Hesmondhalgh, 2006), each of which operates according to its own logic (see Table I for a summary of these two subfields’ contrasting logics). An important difference between these two logics is the stakes that are most important to participants (Bourdieu,1971/1985). In the first subfield, participants care most about gaining status (symbolic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of restricted production or the avant-garde. In the second subfield, participants care most about gaining popularity (economic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of large-scale production. For example, in the field of cinema, cultural products from the subfield of large-scale production would include most blockbuster action films, whereas products from the subfield of restricted production would include art-house films, which, although earning critical acclaim, might be shown in only a few movie houses.

Bourdieu observed that a key motivation for those participating in the subfield of restricted production is to reject the logic of the subfield of large-scale production. Consequently, the tensions between the two subfields influence the activities in each. Fully understanding a cultural product therefore requires analyzing not only the players and cultural products produced within a particular subfield but also the players and products in corresponding subfields with different logics. For example, understanding Ariana Grande’s music requires not only comparing it with others in the same field of large-scale production but also with music by artists such as 12th Planet, whose work is categorized in the niche music genre of dubstep and follows the logic of restricted production. According to Bourdieu (1971/1985), aiming for either economic or symbolic capital encourages players in different subfields to focus on different audiences. On the one hand, those competing for popularity (and thus economic capital) care most about acceptance from the “public at large” (p. 17) – an audience comprised of consumers (not producers) of cultural products. Importantly, this audience needs to be sufficiently large so that, if its members choose a cultural product, the product’s creators and distributors can earn significant economic capital. On the other hand, those competing for status (and thus symbolic capital) care most about recognition from other producers in the subfield. Other producers in the subfield are much more familiar with the rules of the game than the consumers are and are themselves competing for status in the subfield. This audience is therefore most appropriate for determining the status of others in the subfield, but is also much narrower than the audience of consumers and potential consumers that the field of large-scale production targets. This explains why Bourdieu refers to this as the subfield of restricted production, and why players who win in this subfield generally cannot achieve the material resources those who win in the subfield of large-scale production earn.

To Bourdieu (1986/1993), the most important difference between the two types of subfields is the players’ autonomy when creating cultural products and influencing the field’s rules. Because the subfield of large-scale production is centrally concerned with eliciting positive reactions from a large audience of consumers, the players producing and disseminating cultural products must pay special attention to these consumers’ tastes and preferences or risk not gaining the stakes that are important to the field, namely, the “conquest of the largest possible market” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). The subfield of large-scale production is therefore more “heteronomous” – it is more influenced by the standards and expectations of those outside of the field of production. Consumer expectations for product features and genres are relatively well-established in the subfield of large-scale production, and producers who compete in these fields therefore achieve “success and the corresponding profits by adjusting to pre-existing demand” (Bourdieu, 1993, p. 82) – that is, pre-existing preferences and tastes.

In contrast, those competing in subfields of restricted production are more concerned with influencing others who are competing in the subfield. Therefore, the standards and expectations of those outside of the field are less relevant. Members of the general public are not only incapable of granting the kind of status these cultural producers seek but are also insufficiently informed about how to accurately judge cultural products produced in this subfield. Consequently, the producers in the subfields of restricted production are more “autonomous” – they are “freed from the censorship and auto-censorship consequent on direct confrontation with the public foreign to the profession” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). In fact, as Bourdieu (1969, p. 92) argues, those who compete in subfields of restricted production often enhance their status by emphasizing their “claim to independence” and their “indifference to the public.”

Although Bourdieu often discussed the subfields as if they are two separate and distinct types, he also recognized that the factors defining a subfield are continuous rather than binary. “Within a single universe,” he wrote:

[…] one always finds the entire range […] between works produced with reference to the restricted market on the one hand and works determined by a representation of the expectations of the widest possible public (Bourdieu,1971/1985, pp. 29-30).

Whether a subfield is heteronomous or autonomous is therefore more a question of degree than of kind. As Bourdieu observed, even authors who produce in fields of restricted production must consider how audiences outside of the field respond, partly because acceptance from these audiences is potentially problematic to those seeking status in the field of restricted production. “Even the author most indifferent to the lure of success and the least disposed to make concessions to the demands of the public,” Bourdieu (1969, p. 97) wrote, “is surely obliged to take account of the social truth of his work as it is reported back to him.”

This paper compares and contrasts the critical reception of musical products produced in relatively autonomous fields to the reception of products produced in relatively heteronomous fields. More specifically, this paper analyzes the music reviews by critics who write for Rolling Stone magazine, an outlet that focuses on popular and niche music genres. As stated, researchers in sociology and business have referred to such individuals as cultural intermediaries and the next section provides a brief review of this research.

2.3 Cultural intermediaries: definition and research summary

Bourdieu analyzed not only how social factors influence a cultural product’s production, but also how social factors influence its meaning and value after it has been produced. Bourdieu proposed that as part of their effort to understand and appreciate a cultural product and to integrate it into their lives, audiences create public “myths” about the creators and their works. These myths are descriptions of, and narratives about, the work, how it was created and what it symbolizes. These myths are influenced by not only what is happening in the artist’s subfield of cultural production but also what is happening in the fields in which the myth-makers and other audience members are competing. Bourdieu observed that certain professions focus on creating and promoting these public myths. An example that Bourdieu frequently discusses is the art critic, who tends to take responsibility for analyzing and explaining the fine arts, such as literature, painting and sculpture (Bourdieu, 1969, 1971/1985, 1992/1995). Bourdieu also argued that in a consumer marketplace that focuses increasingly on selling symbols and meaning, cultural products such as perfume and clothing – and even cleaning products and breakfast cereals – require their own public myths. Consequently, those producing these products require professionals to develop, translate and transmit these myths to the appropriate audiences – professionals who include, for example, advertising agency executives, property developers, tourism managers and market research experts (Bourdieu, 1969, 1984).

These observations, as well as similar observations by other authors and thinkers, have inspired researchers to develop a stream of research that focuses on cultural intermediaries (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Jamal, 2003; Lonergan et al., 2018; Shrum, 1991). A cultural intermediary is someone whose role is to mediate between the producer’s needs and the product’s consumer (Cronin, 2004, p. 350; Kobayashi et al., 2018; Wright, 2005). A prototypical cultural intermediary has two key qualities. First, his or her primary professional function is to explain or frame the value and significance of a symbolic good or service to particular consumers or other audiences (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Durrer and Miles, 2009; Komarova and Velthuis, 2018; Lane, 2019; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Ocejo, 2012; Shrum, 1991). Second, to serve this function, cultural intermediaries must have a level of knowledge and expertise that is greater – in the relevant areas – than that of their target audience (Durrer and Miles, 2009; Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Parker et al., 2018; Warren and Dinnie, 2018). In certain markets, structural or cultural factors have prevented formal cultural intermediaries from emerging, in which case producers must shoulder the responsibility for translating their work (Menon, 2019; Whitson et al., 2019). However, formal cultural intermediaries exist in a plethora of markets as diverse as biology, accounting and music (Negus, 2002).

What standards are likely to be most important when a cultural intermediary translates a product or work of art? Bourdieu was at best ambivalent in his response to this question. On the one hand, he sometimes suggested that critics strongly reflected the logic of the fields they analyzed. For example, he described how the critics of works produced by a subfield of restricted production place themselves “unconditionally at the service of the artist […]” and attempt “scrupulously to decipher his intentions, whereas excluding the public of non-producers from the entire business […]” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 18). Bourdieu also described how cultural intermediaries in subfields of large-scale production sometimes mirror their subfields’ logic (Kuipers, 2012; Maguire, 2008; Ocejo, 2012). These intermediaries “sell so well because they believe in what they sell […] [and are] predisposed to collaborate with total conviction” in the dissemination of the subfield’s values (Bourdieu, 1984, p. 365). On the other hand, Bourdieu sometimes suggested that critics are more likely to follow their personal logic rather than the logic of the field that produced a cultural product. For example, Bourdieu argues that the critical response to Flaubert’s “Sentimental Education” was due more to the fields in which the critics were working than to the novel’s attributes or the attributes of the field in which Flaubert was operating (Bourdieu,1992/1995, pp. 100-103). Bourdieu also sometimes referred to the artists’ and critics’ influence on each other as a system of circular causality (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 21, 1984, p. 99, 1992/1995, p. 289), whereby audiences always influence the producers to a certain extent and vice versa, and where no original cause can therefore be identified.

In light of Bourdieu’s ambivalence about cultural producers’ influence on cultural intermediaries, this research explores the question of whether or not intermediaries reflect the logic, and thus apply the standards, of the producers in the fields they analyze. More specifically, this research explores the proposition that cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other in their work because they operate within their personal fields and will therefore leverage their individual qualities to maximize their success in relation to other intermediaries (Chávez, 2012). In the next section, we identify field-specific cultural capital as a key difference that exists among cultural intermediaries in all fields and which, we argue, will significantly influence the intermediary’s work.

2.4 Field-specific cultural capital affects how a person competes in a subfield

A key factor that differentiates players in a field is their “field-specific,” “localized” or “field-dependent” cultural capital (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Kates, 2002; McAlexander et al., 2014; McQuarrie et al., 2012; Saatciojlu and Ozanne, 2013). All of these terms refer to resources that a player develops while learning about and competing within a particular field. These resources can include expertise and knowledge, social connections, material resources and/or prestige (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012). By definition, field-specific cultural capital is more helpful to players when they are competing in the field where the capital was developed than when competing in other fields (whereas field-independent or general cultural capital is helpful to players across multiple fields).

This paper analyzes how a cultural intermediary’s level of field-specific cultural capital influences his or her work. (We operationalize field-specific cultural capital in terms of experience – how long a person has been playing the role of cultural intermediary, and how much work the person has done in the field.) The influence of a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital has received some attention from researchers. For example, McQuarrie et al. (2012) show that, as cultural intermediaries in social media gain field-specific cultural capital, they need to renegotiate their relationship with consumers. Also Komarova and Velthuis (2018) show that a cultural intermediary’s success may depend more on the institutional context and economic resources available to the intermediary than on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Yet, no research to our knowledge has examined how an intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital may influence the standards that he or she applies to cultural works, and whether those standards are similar to or different from the standards of the people producing the cultural works.

Notably, a few studies have demonstrated that a consumer’s level of education and experience in a field – and, thus, his or her field-specific cultural capital – can influence the standards that he or she deems important when making consumption choices in the field. This previous research has suggested that those who have been competing in a field for a relatively short time tend to pursue stereotypic strategies that strongly reflect well-known assumptions about the standards in the subfield. In contrast, those who have been competing for a relatively long time tend to purposefully choose strategies that are more individualistic and which purposefully differ from the new participants’ strategies. For instance, Kates (2002, p. 390) notes that men who are relatively new to the homosexual community are more likely to rely on gay stereotypes to identify other gay men and guide their own behavior, whereas those who have been in the community for a while have a “more refined” approach, which often results in choices that violate the stereotype. As another example, Arsel and Thompson (2011) show that those who have been long-time players in the hipster field tend to make more individualistic choices and, therefore, tend to eschew choices that have become stereotypic of the field (and which those who are relatively new to the field are more likely to select).

These findings paint distinct pictures for those with less versus more field-specific cultural capital [although, see Beunza and Garud (2007) for an alternative perspective]. Those who are relatively new to a field first need to learn how to play according to the field’s rules, which often means making choices that raise as few doubts as possible about whether the player knows the rules and can competently follow them. In contrast, those with greater field-specific cultural capital are more likely to have the confidence, status and sophistication to veer away from standard and expected choices. They know how to play by the rules, but they enhance status by playing with the rules in a way that distinguishes themselves from those with less field-specific cultural capital. Based on these findings, we predict that the standards that cultural intermediaries with less field-specific cultural capital apply are more likely to reflect the logic of the field they are reviewing. In contrast, the standards that cultural intermediaries with more field-specific cultural capital apply are less likely to reflect the logic of the field they are reviewing. In fact, because those with more field-specific cultural capital seek to distinguish themselves from those with less, we predict that relatively high field-specific cultural capital can sometimes lead a cultural intermediary to follow a logic that is opposite to the field he or she is reviewing.

2.5 How field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy may affect a cultural intermediary’s perspective on authenticity

To investigate questions about how field-specific cultural capital (i.e. a cultural intermediary’s experience) might interact with field autonomy (i.e. whether a field is more heteronomous or autonomous), this paper focuses on how music critics discuss a cultural producer’s authenticity. Research has shown that consumers value authenticity (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Dhar, 2014; Rose and Wood, 2005) and that the authenticity concept can be generally defined in one of two ways. On one hand, authenticity can mean being true to one’s self. This paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s term, “moral authenticity,” to refer to this type of authenticity, which is also known as “self authenticity,” “expressive authenticity,” “indexical authenticity” or “existential authenticity” (Dutton, 2003; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016; Wang, 1999). On the other hand, authenticity can mean being true to a certain established type or genre. To refer to this kind of authenticity, this paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s (2009) “type authenticity,” which is also known as “iconic authenticity” or “categorical authenticity” (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016). This project focuses on authenticity because Bourdieu offers specific predictions about how the logic of restricted production and the logic of large-scale production are likely to demand different types of authenticity. This in turn allows us to predict what authenticity standards are likely to be most important to producers in each field, and to compare that prediction with the type of authenticity discussed by critics.

Academics define moral authenticity as not responding to standards and listening to your inner voice. In Holt’s (2002, p. 83) words, a product or brand is authentic if it is “perceived as invented and disseminated by parties without an instrumental economic agenda, by people who are intrinsically motivated by their inherent value.” A morally authentic producer is a producer who is “sincere, assumes responsibility for his/her actions and makes explicit value-based choices […] rather than accepting pre-programmed or socially imposed values and actions” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). According to Bourdieu, artists producing in the fields of restricted production prioritize moral authenticity. In these subfields:

[…] the true subject of the work of art is nothing other than the specifically artistic manner in which the artist grasps the world, those infallible signs of his mastery of his art (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20).

Subfields of restricted production therefore “exclude those artists suspected of submitting to external demands” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20). Artists in fields of restricted production ignore or purposefully violate established standards – an artistic decision that they expect, and even hope, will result in rejection from those who anticipate and prefer cultural products that adhere to standards:

[T]he structural gap between supply and demand [in the field of restricted production] contributes to the artists’ determination to steep themselves in the search for “originality” (with its concomitant ideology of the misunderstood genius) (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 22).

In contrast, Bourdieu expected subfields of large-scale production to produce works that adhere to standards and which therefore focus on type authenticity. These works rely on “immediately accessible technical processes and aesthetic effects, or the systematic exclusion of all potentially controversial themes or those liable to shock this or that section of the public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 28). As an example, Bourdieu mentions Westerns—films that “have to work within the very strict conventions of a heavily stereotyped genre” and which are:

[…] continually referring back to previous solutions – assumed to be known [by the audience] – in the solutions they provide to canonical problems, and they are continually bordering on pastiche or parody of previous authors, against whom they measure themselves (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 30).

Bourdieu (1971/1985, p. 30) also refers to works produced by subfields of large-scale production as being “characterized by tried and proven techniques and an oscillation between plagiarism and parody.” This is type authenticity or “a focus on whether the object meets the criteria for inclusion or membership in a type of genre or category,” and which “presupposes the existence of the […] type or genre, which is a culturally defined classification” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). As a result of this expectation for adherence to standards, expressions of self – especially those that purposefully ignore or violate standards – are not valued as highly in subfields of large-scale production:

Original experimentation entering the field of large-scale production almost always comes up against the breakdown in communication liable to arise from the use of codes inaccessible to the “mass public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 32).

Consequently, while the logic of large-scale production prioritizes adherence to standards, it makes little room for expression of self: Works produced for the field of large-scale production are “most often the culmination of transactions and compromises among various categories of agents,” who “use their specific competencies to guarantee a wide variety of cultural interests while simultaneously reactivating the self-censorship engendered by the vast industrial and bureaucratic organizations of cultural production” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 29).

Bourdieu’s predictions about the value of different kinds of authenticity in different subfields of cultural production have been supported in the context of popular music, which is this project’s context. For instance, Peterson’s (1997) work on authenticity in country music supports the idea that subfields of restricted production are more likely to validate expressions of self (i.e. moral authenticity), whereas subfields of large-scale production are more likely to validate adherence to standards (i.e. type authenticity). According to Peterson (1997), this progression is because of the fact that younger, smaller subfields are less likely to have standards that artists and audiences alike accept and institutionalize. Thus, artists producing works in younger subfields cannot rely on type authenticity as a basis for authenticity and can rely only on moral authenticity. In contrast, more established subfields have been market-tested through trial and error and have established the expectations that are required for success. Peterson (1997, p. 223) observes that, from the inception of country music in the early 1920s to its popularity in the late 1990s, what counted as authentic evolved in the music genre. At the genesis of country music, there was:

[…] no clear tradition […] with its own past, its own iconic progenitors, its own institutional delivery system, and its own self-conscious fan community. There was then no shared understanding of what constituted country music as a distinct genre.

However, after years of institutionalization and crystallization of genre expectations, “artists seeking to establish the bona fides of authenticity now have available a set of signifiers that had not been codified in 1953” (Peterson, 1997, p. 255). (Stavraki et al. (2018) offer a similar analysis of how consumers who are more familiar with well-known signifiers interpret art differently than those who are less familiar.)

To summarize, Bourdieu proposed that cultural production industries are likely to be divided into two general kinds of subfields. The first kind – subfields of restricted production – is more autonomous and, thus, more likely to value moral authenticity than type authenticity. The second kind – subfields of large-scale production – is more heteronomous and, thus, more likely to value type authenticity than moral authenticity. Building on our earlier discussion of field-specific cultural capital and standards (where those with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow a subfields standards), we therefore predict the following:

H1.

For more heteronomous fields, (a) type authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field specific cultural capital.

H2.

For more autonomous fields, (a) type authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital.

3. Data and methods

This project uses a quantitative, automated content analysis of critics’ music album reviews. Researchers generally use automated content (or textual) analysis to codify text into groups or categories based on selected criteria, aiming to convert the qualitative data into quantitative measures that can be statistically analyzed (Weber, 1990, p. 18). This approach allows researchers to make “replicable and valid inferences from texts (or other meaningful matter) to the contexts of their use” (Krippendorff, 1989, p. 18). We followed Humphreys and Wang’s (2017) recommended approach for analyses of this nature. According to these authors, automated content analysis must begin with the identification of a research question and, relatedly, the identification of constructs to be examined. Once a researcher has identified the research question and the related constructs, he or she should start collecting the data. Thereafter, the data has to be prepared, unitized and stored. The next step involves the operationalization of constructs, followed by the validation of the instruments adopted to measure them (e.g. dictionaries of keywords). Finally, the data has to be analyzed and interpreted, and the main constructs’ predictive validity must be tested. In the next sections, we describe how we followed these steps.

3.1 Research question and related constructs identification

Our hypotheses center on whether authenticity discussions are a function of reviewer field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy. Thus, for our textual analysis, authenticity was the focal construct and, more specifically, the two types of authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity), which have been a central focus in the literature on authenticity. We anticipate that two other constructs – a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital and the relative autonomy of the field in which the music was produced – will affect the extent to which type and/or moral authenticity is mentioned in a music review.

3.2 Data collection and data preparation

The full corpus of Rolling Stone album reviews is available on the magazine’s official website, and we therefore used Web Content Extractor to download 4,452 reviews. Rolling Stone is a useful source for this investigation because it provides not only a large review database for analysis but also, owing to its longevity, allows estimating a reviewer’s experience (i.e. his or her field-specific cultural capital) because many reviewers worked for the magazine for several years. Furthermore, because Rolling Stone focuses on popular and niche music genres, it facilitates comparing fields with different levels of autonomy (i.e. more heteronomous versus more autonomous fields). Rolling Stone is also an influential magazine (Frith, 1983) and its output is commonly analyzed in empirical analyses of the popular music market (McLeod, 2001). Also important, the full corpus of Rolling Stone reviews during this time period is available online, allowing a comprehensive analysis of the album reviews. These methods are therefore similar in spirit to Kristensen et al.’s (2019) analysis of the Mad Men TV series’ reviews.

We collected the following data for each review: the review’s text, the review’s date, the artist’s name, the album’s name and the reviewer’s name. The resulting dataset includes the entire population of reviews published from 1967 to 2014. A total of 421 reviewers wrote these reviews. Each of these reviewers published an average of 10.61 reviews and referred to a total of 1,404 artists, who each produced 3.17 music albums on average.

Next, we identified the genres for each album. Using the tags that Last.fm associates with each artist (e.g. American, blues-rock, hard-rock, heavy-metal) and Wikipedia’s “List of Popular Genres,” a research assistant identified one music genre for each album (See Table II for more detailed information). The research assistant collected all the tags that Last.fm associated with each artist and then picked a basic music genre, which could be consistently associated with the specific artist from Wikipedia’s list. For instance, Last.fm might list an artist as being associated with the genres of folk, singer-songwriter, Americana and folk-rock. In this case, Wikipedia classifies all four of these genres as part of the basic music genre, folk. However, in some cases, Last.fm associated artists with multiple music genres. For instance, an artist might be tagged as rock, hard-rock, blues-rock and blues. This artist could be associated with either rock or blues, which, according to Wikipedia, are two distinct music genres. In these cases, we followed Last.fm’s approach, which lists an artist’s most important or definitive tag first and the less definitive tags second. Hence, the artist imagined above would be considered a rock instead of a blues musician because rock was listed first. To test this classification approach’s reliability, a second coder manually coded a random sample of 150 artists (about 10 per cent of the total). The percent agreement between the two coders was 92.00 per cent.

After identifying and collecting the data, we spell-checked the text and created an MS Word macro to segment the reviews into 4,452 separate text files, which were stored on each of the co-authors’ personal computers.

3.3 Operationalization and dictionary validation

This research used a top-down approach to construct definition, which is common for computer-aided content analysis (Humphreys, 2010; Ludwig et al., 2013), and which uses theoretical constructs as a starting point for creating custom dictionaries to be used for textual analysis. This process began with a preliminary analysis of how Rolling Stone reviewers commonly reference type and moral authenticity – constructs identified in previous research as being important and informative. We identified a random sample of 450 reviews (about 10 per cent of the total), stratified by music genres and decades. The first author followed common qualitative procedures to analyze the reviews (Spiggle, 1994), which occupied 416 (double spaced) pages in total.

More specifically, using Atlas.Ti, the first author applied open, axial and theoretical coding procedures to the reviews (Corbin and Strauss, 1990). This analysis enabled us to identify two different variables associated with type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and two variables related to moral authenticity (i.e. personal authenticity and marketing language). Genre reference refers to words that indicate a particular type of music, such as jazz, blues or country. Relatedly, place reference refers to words that mention a particular location in association with the music – for example, Memphis which is often associated with blues, Jamaica which is often associated with reggae and ska and Detroit which is often associated with Motown. Words referencing genre and place are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist’s music lives up to expectations for a particular type of music genre. Personal authenticity refers to words mentioning an artist’s sincerity or honesty. Marketing language uses words that reference the opposite – a focus on producing music for profit, generating sales and selling out. Words referencing personal authenticity and marketing language are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist produces music from the heart or for monetary gain.

The dictionary validation stage was next (Humphreys and Wang, 2017). We refined the four dictionaries to minimize the likelihood of false negatives and false positives. First, to ensure that we captured as many of the various ways in which the key concepts could be discussed (and to avoid false negatives), we augmented the original dictionaries with potential synonyms, word stems and tenses (Humphreys and Wang, 2017), as well as additional keywords derived from the related literature on authenticity and popular music (Corciolani, 2014; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Holt, 2002; Newman and Smith, 2016; Peterson, 1997; Trilling, 1972). Adding these terms to the dictionary increased the likelihood that we would capture a construct when it was discussed. Second, certain words identified via this process had multiple connotations, including connoted meanings that were unrelated to our concepts of interest. Because these could lead to false positives, we tested the dictionaries on the texts and analyzed ten instances at a time to remove words with a high incidence of connoting concepts other than the ones we were interested in (Weber, 2005).

Furthermore, in accordance with Humphreys and Wang (2017), as well as Pennebaker et al. (2007), we asked three external judges to assess whether each proposed dictionary should include each keyword. For instance, should the “place reference” category include the word “Liverpool”? Should the “personal authenticity” category include the word “soulful”? Words remained in the dictionary if at least two coders agreed it should be kept; we removed words only if two judges thought that it should be removed (Humphreys, 2010). This process produced the dictionaries that are described in Table III and which we used for our subsequent analysis.

3.4 Analysis and interpretation

Next, we analyzed the relationships among our key variables. We used the Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC) software to obtain the frequency of words for each kind of authenticity – type and moral – as a percentage of total words in each review (the descriptive statistics are reported in Table IV). Following similar analyses by Genevsky and Knutson (2015), as well as Ludwig et al. (2013), we used ordinary least squares (OLS) regression to determine whether the interaction between field autonomy and reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital predicted the kind of authenticity discussed in the review.

To measure field autonomy, we counted the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone for a particular genre in a particular year (i.e. genre size). Given Rolling Stone’s importance as an arbiter of mainstream music (Frith, 1983), we can reasonably assume that the genres that reviewers analyze more frequently are more likely to reflect the logic of large-scale production, and the genres least frequently analyzed are more likely to reflect the logic of restricted production. We report the frequency of reviews per genre by decade in Table II.

We estimated the reviewers’ field-specific cultural capital by counting the number of reviews each reviewer wrote and published in Rolling Stone during a specific review’s calendar year (i.e. reviewer experience). As stated, the average number of reviews a reviewer wrote during the time period of our analysis was 10.61 (SD = 33.58), and the range of reviews a single reviewer wrote was 1-366. The average number of reviews in the top quartile was 35.85 (SD = 60.36). Both genre size and reviewer experience are two relative measures; that is, our investigation focuses on whether reviewers with more (versus less) experience treated bigger (versus smaller) music genres or more (versus less) autonomous fields similarly or differently. Because our measures of field-specific cultural capital (i.e. reviewer experience) and field autonomy (i.e. genre size) were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each.

Because Rolling Stone is not the only outlet where music critics can publish their reviews, it is possible that reviewers who wrote few reviews in Rolling Stone could have been contemporaneously writing extensively elsewhere. To the extent this was the case, the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone might poorly reflect a reviewer’s experience and field-specific cultural capital (for example, if a reviewer wrote extensively in other prominent magazines but not much in Rolling Stone). Therefore, to increase confidence in this measure, we tested the extent to which the reviewers in the Rolling Stone database published reviews in other outlets. We extracted a random sample of 45 Rolling Stone reviewers from our data set, which represents about 10 per cent of the total, stratified according to the number of published reviews. Then, we searched for each reviewer in both the Music Magazine Archive (https://mma-napubcoonline-com) and the Entertainment Industry Magazine Archive (Proquest) databases to count how many reviews each one authored during the same period in other outlets. We then assessed the correlation between the number of reviews written by each reviewer in Rolling Stone and their number of reviews in each of the other two databases. If reviewers publishing infrequently in Rolling Stone were publishing frequently in other outlets we would expect a negative correlation, raising concerns about whether publication frequency in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience. Our analysis of the entire sample did not show any significant correlations (rRS-MMA = –0.08, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = 0.04, p > 0.10). We also separately estimated the correlations for those who were above and below the median publication frequency in Rolling Stone for this sample. This additional analysis did not show a significant correlation for reviewers above the median (rRS-MMA = –0.01, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = –0.02, p > 0.10), but did show a marginally significant positive correlation for those below the median (rRS-MMA = 0.38, p = 0.06; rRS-EIA = 0.39, p = 0.06), suggesting that those writing infrequently in Rolling Stone were also writing infrequently for other outlets. Because this analysis did not produce any significant negative correlations, and did produce a marginally significant positive correlation for reviewers with a lower publication frequency, this increases confidence that number of reviews published in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience and field-specific cultural capital, especially given the prominence and prestige of Rolling Stone as an outlet for cultural intermediaries.

The regression analyses that we implemented for this research also included several covariates to account for otherwise unexplained variance in our models. Type of artist distinguished among male single artists (566; 40.31 per cent of the total), female single artists (178; 12.68 per cent), male bands (537; 38.25 per cent), female bands (12; 0.85 per cent) and other artists (e.g. male-female bands, various artists’ albums) (111; 7.90 per cent). We measured tags as the number of tags Last.fm associates with a reviewed artist (M = 3.10; SD = 1.15). We then calculated genre diversity as the percentage of music albums associated with more than the average number of tags in a particular music genre per year (M = 1.12; SD = 0.16). We measured artist experience as the number of albums an artist had released at the time of a specific review (M = 2.13; SD = 0.64). Because artist experience and genre diversity were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each. We measured these covariates, because we suspected that – unconnected to a subfield’s relative autonomy and a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital – authenticity issues might depend on the type of artist, the artist’s relative experience or the extent to which a genre was clearly or loosely defined. We also controlled for date, measured as the day on which a music album review was released, to account for any variance that might occur in a particular issue; for example, a holiday issue will probably contain more album reviews about boxed sets. Finally, we controlled for word count, i.e. the total number of words of each music album review (M = 375.30; SD = 347.28), and words per sentence (M = 24.15; SD = 5.50), assuming that longer sentences and reviews may be more – or less – likely to include certain kinds of analyses. (We also modeled the effect of artist experience [moderated by reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital] and the effect of genre diversity [moderated by genre size]. We discuss these effects at the end of the findings section.)

3.5 Validation

As Humphreys and Wang (2017) suggest, testing the main constructs’ predictive validity helps to increase confidence that a study’s constructs are measured appropriately, and that the analytic methods are appropriate for capturing construct relationships. One approach that Humphreys and Wang (2017) recommend is a triangulation analysis, which tests the relationship between a study’s key constructs and other constructs that may not be central to the study, but which may be expected to be related to a study’s constructs in accordance with construct definitions or previous theory (Humphreys, 2010; Pennebaker and King, 1999). To the extent that these expected correlations emerge, confidence in the construct validity is enhanced.

Consequently, we ran an analysis to check whether our main dependent variables correlated with the other related constructs. Regarding type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference), we correlated our two variables with the affiliation dictionary developed and validated by Pennebaker et al. (2007). This dictionary was created to capture a person’s fundamental need to feel part of a social group, as defined by McClelland (1987). Because judgments about type authenticity are also about deciding whether something is part of a group, we anticipated a degree of convergence between the two concepts. For example, a few of the keywords included in the affiliation dictionary are “associates,” “belong” and “tradition.” As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between affiliation and genre reference (r = 0.02; p < 0.05) and between affiliation and place reference (r = 0.10; p < 0.001).

Regarding moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity), we correlated our two variables with the dictionary developed and validated by Opoku et al. (2006). This dictionary, which is based on Aaker’s (1997) five traits of brand personality, measures, among other things, a brand’s level of sincerity. Opoku et al. (2006, p. 31) refer to sincerity as reflecting an entity’s “true […] nature”, so we expected that this dictionary would correlate with our measures of moral authenticity. As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and personal authenticity (r = 0.05; p < 0.001) and a negative and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and marketing language (r = –0.04; p < 0.01).

4. Results

Using the PROCESS macro for SPSS (Model 1, Hayes, 2013), we estimated four models to test whether the interaction effects between reviewer experience (i.e. field-specific cultural capital) and genre size (i.e. field autonomy), predicted genre reference, place reference, marketing language and personal authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity). The results of the four OLS regressions (see Table V) show that three of the four hypothesized interactions are statistically significant, whereas one is marginally significant. The interaction between reviewer experience and genre size as a predictor of genre reference is negative and marginally significant (ß = –0.005; t = –1.915, p < 0.10), whereas that of place reference is negative and statistically significant (ß = –0.022; t = –2.950, p < 0.01). In contrast, the interaction effect of reviewer experience and genre size on marketing language is significantly positive (ß = 0.009; t = 2.209, p < 0.05), as is that of personal authenticity (ß = 0.013; t = 2.787, p < 0.01).

Figure 1 graphically illustrates the interactions and plots the conditional effects of reviewer experience at various levels of genre size for each dependent variable. We also summarize the results in Figure 2. If reviewers follow the logic of the field that produced a cultural product, we would expect that reviewers of music produced by smaller (i.e. more autonomous) fields would focus less on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and more on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). We would also expect that reviewers of music produced by larger (i.e. more heteronomous) fields would focus more on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and less on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). Our hypotheses predict that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are likely to follow this pattern but that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are likely to do the opposite.

We plot our results in Figure 1. In each of the plots for this figure, the frequency of referencing the relevant language is indicated by the y-axis, and reviewer experience is indicated by the x-axis. Within each plot, lines of different styles (solid, dashed, etc.) represent different genre sizes (i.e. different levels of field autonomy). Because our hypotheses predict differences between reviewers with different experience (i.e. different levels of field-specific cultural capital), moderated by genre size (field autonomy/heteronomy), support for our hypotheses would be indicated by different slopes for the lines in the plots.

The general pattern of results shown in Figure 1 supports our hypotheses. First, consider the effects when genre size was large (high heteronomy). To do this, focus on the small-dashed lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the largest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that, for these heteronomous genres, type authenticity will be more important and moral authenticity will be less important. We hypothesized that less-experienced reviewers are more likely than more-experienced reviewers to reflect these standards. We would therefore expect a downward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language) and an upward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language). The small-dashed lines are indeed downward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are upward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

Now consider the effects when genre size was small (high autonomy). To do this, focus on the solid lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the smallest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that type authenticity will be less important for autonomous genres and moral authenticity will be more important. Given our hypotheses, we would expect an upward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language) and a downward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language). The solid lines are indeed upward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are downward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

While the visual pattern of data in Figure 1 suggests general support for our hypotheses, we performed statistical tests on each model by using the Johnson–Neyman technique (Hayes and Matthes, 2009; Johnson and Neyman, 1936), which calculates the range of the moderator in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically different from zero. This technique is also called a floodlight analysis (Spiller et al., 2013). The points of transition identified through this method distinguish areas, if any, in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically distinct (Hayes and Rockwood, 2017).

Our hypotheses were supported for all the associated tests for this analysis, except in the case of genre reference language when genres were smaller. For this dependent variable [Figure 3(a)], there is only one significant Johnson–Neyman region, which corresponds to a genre size > 8.308. This means that, for more heteronomous fields (genre size > 8.308), reviewer experience has a statistically significant and negative effect on genre reference. That is, as predicted by H1a, when the genre size was big, this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital. However, H2a was not supported for this dependent variable. When genre size was smaller (genre size < 8.308), reviewer experience had no effect on the likelihood of mentioning this type-authenticity variable (See the gray regions in Figure 3). (See the Appendix for the complete table of conditional effects of reviewer experience on the dependent variables at different values of genre size.)

For place reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(b)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.502), this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1a. For more autonomous fields (genre size < 4.435), this type-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2a.

PROCESS also identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions for marketing language, which is a measure of moral authenticity [see Figure 3(c)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.601), reviewer experience has a positive and statistically significant effect on marketing language. When discussing music produced by more heteronomous fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. More autonomous fields (genre size < 1.372) exhibited the opposite tendency. In these fields, this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

For personal authenticity (also a measure of moral authenticity), PROCESS again identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(d)]. More heteronomous fields exhibited a positive, significant effect of reviewer experience on personal authenticity (genre size > 5.241). That is, in these fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. In contrast, in more autonomous fields (genre size < 1.386), this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

While many of this study’s hypotheses were supported by the data, we tested two sets of hypotheses that were only partially supported, and where our interpretation of the results is therefore more speculative. The first set of hypotheses centered on the effect of genre diversity. We anticipated that the likelihood of discussing different types of authenticity would be affected by genre diversity, moderated by genre size. We believed that, when a genre has higher internal diversity, widely agreed-upon stereotypic elements would be less likely, making it more difficult for a reviewer to discuss type authenticity (Mattsson et al., 2010). We therefore expected that more-diverse genres would, relative to less-diverse genres, focus less on type authenticity and more on moral authenticity. We further expected that this tendency would be stronger in larger genres, where the logic of large-scale production and its emphasis on type authenticity would be more disrupted by genre diversity.

Our analysis showed that the genre diversity × genre size interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (genre reference and marketing language), and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. An investigation of this interaction showed that, as predicted, the authenticity language used in reviews of music from small (autonomous) genres was unaffected by genre diversity, but that the authenticity language used in reviews of music from large (heteronomous) genres was affected (Figure 4). However, while we had anticipated that diversity would decrease focus on type authenticity and increase focus on moral authenticity, our results indicate a decreased focus on both. Reviews of music from more-diverse genres were, relative to reviews of music from less-diverse genres, less likely to mention genre (type authenticity) and less likely to mention marketing language (moral authenticity).

Details of this analysis are depicted in Figure 4. For genre reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified one Johnson–Neyman significance region (Figure 4[c]). This means that, for a genre size higher than 1.391 (see the gray regions in Figure 4), an increase in genre diversity led reviewers to mention significantly less genre references. Similarly, for marketing language (a measure of moral authenticity), one Johnson–Neyman region was identified, corresponding to genre size > 5.134 [Figure 4(d)]. Thus, for larger genres, genre diversity had a negative and statistically significant effect on marketing language. The result for genre reference supports our intuition that the co-existence of different types in more diverse genres makes it less productive or more challenging to discuss authenticity relative to a particular type. However, the result for marketing language does not support our expectation that, when type authenticity is less important, discussions of moral authenticity naturally rise. In fact, it supports the opposite. Although moral authenticity is already relatively unimportant in larger genres, it could be that – to the extent it is important – it is linked to type authenticity. For example, while success in a field of large-scale production such as country music hinges primarily on being authentic to type, it may be additionally helpful if the artist is also perceived to be personally authentic to the type. A musician who follows the standards of bluegrass music may be considered to be high in type authenticity, but his or her authenticity may be enhanced if the musician grew up in a part of the country known for bluegrass and is therefore also playing music that is morally authentic to him or her. However, our results suggest that greater diversity in a field of large-scale production (for example, greater diversity in what counts as traditional bluegrass music) may make it more difficult for reviewers to discuss this version of moral authenticity.

A second set of hypotheses centered on artist experience. Given Marshall’s (2006) observation about the importance of artists establishing a personal connection with their fans (even in fields of large-scale production), we anticipated that, as an artist’s career develops, he or she would increasingly focus on moral authenticity, regardless of whether he or she works in a field of restricted or large-scale production. We also reasoned that it is harder for an artist to build moral authenticity after only one music album and easier to build it over time. Because the central hypothesis for our work is that less experienced reviewers are more likely to assess artists on the artists’ terms (and that more experienced reviewers are less likely to do this), we hypothesized that less experienced reviewers would focus more on moral authenticity when reviewing experienced artists and more on type authenticity when reviewing less experienced artists.

Our analysis showed that the artist experience × reviewer experience interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (place reference and personal authenticity) and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. Looking at a plot of the results, the general pattern supports our hypotheses for these two dependent variables. Consider the solid line in Figure 5(a) and 5(b), which represent the least experienced artists in our data set. This line slopes downward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference (a measure of type authenticity) and slopes upward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity (a measure of moral authenticity). The short-dashed lines in Figure 5(a) and 5(b) represent the most experienced artists in our data set. As expected, this line slopes upward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference and downward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity. So, as expected, less experienced reviewers are more likely than more experienced reviewers to mention type authenticity for less experienced artists and moral authenticity for more experienced artists.

Figure 5 also shows that, for place reference, PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 5(c)]. The first region falls below an artist experience equal to 1.632, whereas the second region corresponds to an artist experience higher than 2.549 (See the gray regions in Figure 5). This result shows that, for less experienced artists (artist experience < 1.632), reviewers with less experience discussed place references significantly more than reviewers with more experience (i.e. reviewer experience negatively affects place reference). In contrast, for more experienced artists (artist experience > 2.549), reviewers with more experience paid more attention to place reference than less experienced reviewers (i.e. reviewer experience positively affects place reference). However, for personal authenticity, only one Johnson-Neyman region was identified, corresponding to artist experience < 2.173 [Figure 5(d)]. For less expert artists, reviewer experience had a statistically significant and positive effect on personal authenticity. These tests provide partial support for the idea that, as an artist’s career progresses, a reviewer with less experience is more likely to focus on moral authenticity whereas a reviewer with more experience is more likely to focus on type authenticity. And, at a more general level, the patterns reinforce the idea that reviewers with more experience are systematically different from reviewers with less experience.

5. Discussion and implications

Cultural intermediaries explain to target audiences how a cultural product should be understood and evaluated, and therefore play an important role in shaping the reception of these products. However, the nature of an intermediary’s influence depends on the standards that he or she uses when interpreting a cultural product. It is therefore important to understand the factors that influence the selection of these standards. This research tests whether Rolling Stone music critics mirror the authenticity standards that are important to musical artists, or whether they apply different standards. This question is theoretically important because Bourdieu was ambivalent about the answer. In certain writings, Bourdieu suggests that cultural intermediaries try to adhere to the standards that are important to the creator, whereas in others he observes that cultural intermediaries operate according to their personal logic, even if that logic is separate and distinct from the artist’s logic. Our results suggest that both of Bourdieu’s observations are true, depending on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Figure 2 summarizes our results.

More specifically, the pattern of effects indicates that reviewers with less experience (and thus lower field-specific cultural capital) are more likely to apply the authenticity standards that Bourdieu predicts are important to artists in a particular subfield. For instance, when reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with less experience are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity. Furthermore, when reviewing music produced by larger, more heteronomous subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. However, the pattern is opposite for reviewers with more experience. These reviewers show a tendency to apply authenticity standards that differ from the standards that Bourdieu predicted are important to artists in the subfield. When reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with more experience are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. Moreover, when reviewing music produced by larger (more heteronomous) subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity.

While Bourdieu did not specifically propose that field-specific cultural capital might be the key to unlock his ambivalence about cultural intermediaries, past research on field-specific cultural capital helps explain this result. Fields are social spaces where members compete for status and, as we explained earlier, research has suggested that those with less field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow expectations, whereas those with more field-specific cultural capital are more likely to distinguish themselves by deviating from expectations. Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that reviewers with less experience would mirror the standards that are important to the artists, whereas those with more experience might focus on the opposite. Although some work has recognized that cultural intermediaries may differ from each other with regard to their stance toward the artist and the consumer (Kuipers, 2012) and that they may adjust their standards when the logic of a field changes (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005), this research is the first to identify a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital as a factor that systematically produces differences among cultural intermediaries.

This paper focuses on comparing the standards reflected in the appraisals of cultural intermediaries with the standards of the artists being reviewed. However, an important area for future research, which this paper does not address, is the potential influence of the standards that are important to consumers. Figure 6 illustrates a theoretical space that simultaneously considers the standards held by artists and by consumers, and thus indicates four general positions that a cultural intermediary can take. As the table indicates, a cultural intermediary can take a stance that is – or is not – in line with the artist’s standards and which is – or is not – in line with consumer standards. Given the cultural intermediary’s role as a translator, one might expect them to always adopt standards similar to those of consumers, but research has identified circumstances in which a cultural intermediary’s standards differ from those of consumers (Chávez, 2012; Coulter et al., 2003; Gurrieri et al., 2016; Wright, 2005).

Our research compared the rows in Figure 6, namely, reviewers who apply standards that are either the same as, or different from, the artist. We found that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the first row of the table (applying the same standards as the artist), whereas those with higher field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the second row of the table (applying different standards). Based on previous research, we have proposed that reviewers with more field-specific cultural capital situate themselves in the second row because they are motivated primarily by a desire to differentiate themselves from reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital, who are situated in the first row. It could be that – like the Flaubert reviewers characterized by Bourdieu – these reviewers are applying their own internal standards, without regard for the standards held by typical consumers of the product or by typical readers of the review. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 4 of Figure 6. To the extent that more experienced reviewers exhibit these tendencies, this might suggest that a cultural producer should pay less attention to (and, if possible, try to navigate away from) cultural intermediaries with significant experience as intermediaries. This is because such intermediaries are speaking primarily to an internal audience of other intermediaries, and not to stakeholder groups that are important to the cultural producer.

However, it could be that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are more attuned to consumer standards than those with lower field-specific cultural capital, and that their differentiation from these less-experienced reviewers is because of a desire and ability to better connect with certain target consumers. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 3 of Table VII. While many cultural producers would bristle in response to reviewers who apply standards that differ from the standards they were considering when they produced their works, some may nonetheless appreciate the benefit of being effectively interpreted for a particular audience. Consider a musician from Cuba who seeks to succeed in the field of restricted production by combining the genre of her home country (salsa) with the genre of her youth (rap). As an artist focusing on the avant-garde, she views her music as being a unique and morally authentic expression of her true self, and is more concerned about what other musicians think of her work than what the general public thinks. This musician may not mind (and may even appreciate) a review that evaluates her music negatively with regard to type authenticity because she knows that her audience eschews type authenticity. This musician may alternatively appreciate a review that evaluates her music positively with regard to type authenticity, especially if the positive review is targeted to customers who care about that standard and therefore results in popularity and sales. Niche artists who become more popular often struggle with concerns about selling out (Corciolani, 2014), but the benefit of greater financial reward is sometimes worth the cost.

A further important step for future research is to examine whether a similar pattern of results can be found among other cultural intermediaries, particularly those in domains other than music. The results of our research support the premise that those who are new to a field tend to follow stereotypic or expected patterns, whereas those who are more expert to a field tend to deviate. A similar dynamic might be expected in fields such as the restaurant market, the cinema market, and the tourism market. However, some research (Beunza and Garud, 2007) has suggested that those who are new to a field may tend to be more iconoclastic instead of more stereotypic. This is not what we found in our research context, but it seems likely that fields differ on this dimension. Therefore, it may be informative to identify fields in which there is a higher expectation that newcomers will exhibit either the one or the other behavior, and to assess the potential impact on the content of cultural intermediaries’ reviews. Another area for future research is to explore how other differences between cultural intermediaries might predict the standards they apply. For example, remembering that Bourdieu’s framework was specifically designed to accommodate how a player’s personal idiosyncrasies might influence how he or she plays the game, future research might examine how personality differences between cultural intermediaries might encourage those with the same field-specific cultural capital to use different strategies and, thus, apply different standards.

Finally, reviews now exist ubiquitously on online platforms such as Amazon, Yelp!, and Hotels.com, in addition to a number of social shopping and technology sites and blogs. Some reviewers even gain status to become known as experts or thought leaders (McQuarrie et al., 2012). Do the dynamics of field-specific cultural capital operate similarly in these very different contexts, where reviewers exist outside of the sanctioned mass media field of magazines? In a world where both writing and reading reviews is common and influential, understanding the ways in which reviewer standards change the nature of the field promises to shed light on the ways in which consumers and producers interpret and enjoy not just artistic products, but perhaps more mundane products such as consumer electronics, cleaning products and building supplies.

Figures

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Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

Figure 1.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

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Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

Figure 2.

Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

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Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 3.

Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

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Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 4.

Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

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Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 5.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Источник: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095/full/html

Comprehensive review of targeted therapy for colorectal cancer

Abstract

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is among the most lethal and prevalent malignancies in the world and was responsible for nearly 881,000 cancer-related deaths in 2018. Surgery and chemotherapy have long been the first choices for cancer patients. However, the prognosis of CRC has never been satisfying, especially for patients with metastatic lesions. Targeted therapy is a new optional approach that has successfully prolonged overall survival for CRC patients. Following successes with the anti-EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) agent cetuximab and the anti-angiogenesis agent bevacizumab, new agents blocking different critical pathways as well as immune checkpoints are emerging at an unprecedented rate. Guidelines worldwide are currently updating the recommended targeted drugs on the basis of the increasing number of high-quality clinical trials. This review provides an overview of existing CRC-targeted agents and their underlying mechanisms, as well as a discussion of their limitations and future trends.

Introduction

Current treatment for colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer (CRC) ranks as the second most lethal cancer and the third most prevalent malignant tumor worldwide. In 2018, 1.8 million new CRC cases arose, and 881,000 deaths were reported, which accounted for nearly 10% of new cancer cases and deaths worldwide,1 and the number of new cases may increase to nearly 2.5 million in 2035.2 According to statistics in the USA, the death rate declined by ~50% in 2016 (13.7 per 10,000 patients) compared with that in 1970 (29.2 per 10,000 patients) because of the rapid development of screening methods and improved treatment methods. However, this trend seems to be observed only in highly developed countries.2 Meanwhile, the 5-year survival rate for CRC is ~64%, but drops to 12% for metastatic CRC, and further investigation is still required to develop effective approaches for medical intervention.3

Given the advances in primary and adjuvant treatments, the survival time in CRC has been improving. Typically, the ideal CRC treatment is to achieve complete removal of the tumor and metastases, which mostly requires surgical intervention.4 However, despite the emergence of numerous screening programs to reduce CRC incidence, nearly a quarter of CRCs are diagnosed at an advanced stage with metastases, and 20% of the remaining cases may develop metachronous metastases, which result in difficulties in curative surgical control and subsequent tumor-related deaths.5,6,7,8 For those patients with unresectable lesions or who are intolerant to surgery, the goal is maximum shrinkage of the tumor and suppression of further tumor spread and growth, and radiotherapy and chemotherapy are the leading strategies for controlling disease in such patients. Of note, in some cases, chemotherapy or radiotherapy might be applied before or after surgery as neoadjuvant or adjuvant treatment to maximally reduce and stabilize the tumor.9,10,11,12

Chemotherapy

Current chemotherapy includes both single-agent therapy, which is mainly fluoropyrimidine (5-FU)-based, and multiple-agent regimens containing one or several drugs, including oxaliplatin (OX), irinotecan (IRI), and capecitabine (CAP or XELODA or XEL). Although studies have argued that first-line single-agent therapy is not inferior to combined regimens in terms of overall survival (OS),13,14 the combined therapy regimens FOLFOX (5-FU+OX), FOXFIRI (5-FU+IRI), XELOX or CAPOX (CAP+OX), and CAPIRI (CAP+OX) remain the mainstream approaches in first-line treatment, while patients with poor performance or at low risk of deterioration are recommended to receive single-agent therapy. When choosing additive agents, efficacy appears to be similar, and only adverse events may differ among different regimens.12,15,16,17 Emerging evidence does not support stronger efficacy in the multiple-agent regimen FOLOXIRI (5-FU+OX+IRI), which is infrequently applied because of its potential increased toxicity.18,19 Nonetheless, data from research performed in recent decades show that using chemotherapy in patients with CRC, especially those with metastases, has pushed their OS time to almost 20 months, resulting in chemotherapy becoming the backbone of CRC treatment.15,20,21 However, chemotherapy is associated with certain limitations, such as existing systemic toxicity, unsatisfying response rate, unpredictable innate and acquired resistance, and low tumor-specific selectivity. Therefore, massive investments have been pledged to develop new approaches to refine or even replace existing CRC chemotherapy.

Targeted therapy

The idea of molecular targeted therapy has a relatively long history. The concept of a chemical that specifically targets a microorganism was first proposed in the early 1900s and expanded to cancer treatment in 1988,22 and this concept was renewed and has flourished in the past 20 years.23

Targeted therapies can work on cancerous cells by directly inhibiting cell proliferation, differentiation, and migration. The tumor microenvironment, including local blood vessels and immune cells, might also be altered by targeted drugs to impede tumor growth and enact stronger immune surveillance and attack. Small molecules, such as monoclonal antibodies, are major players in targeted therapies.24,25,26 Small molecules are a group of molecules with a molecular weight <900 Da that might penetrate into cells, mostly working within cells to inactivate selected enzymes, thereby interfering with tumor cell growth and even triggering apoptosis. Cyclin-dependent kinases, proteasomes, and poly ADP-ribose polymerase make up most of the molecular targets. Carfilzomib for multiple myeloma, ribociclib for metastatic breast cancer, and rucaparib for BRCA-positive ovarian cancer are a few examples.23 For targets outside cells, such as cell surface receptors or membrane-bound sites, monoclonal antibodies or therapeutic antibodies can recognize and bind them to directly regulate downstream cell cycle progression and cell death. In addition, certain monoclonal antibodies work on cells other than cancer cells, such as immune cells, which helps to manipulate the immune system to attack human cancer.

Landscape of current CRC-targeted therapy

The first targeted agent for CRC approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was cetuximab in 2004, followed by bevacizumab in the same year, and emerging FDA-approved targeted drugs for CRC have been brought to market successively since then, with more on the way (Fig. 1). Numerous agents have been developed and brought into preclinical and clinical trials. The list of recommended CRC-targeted agents from guidelines such as those from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) is being updated quickly, given the unprecedented speed of the emergence of large trials (Fig. 2).

VEGF: vascular endothelial growth factor; VEGFR: vascular endothelial growth factor receptor; EGFR: epidermal growth factor receptor

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CRC: colorectal cancer; VEGF/VEGFR: vascular endothelial growth factor/vascular endothelial growth factor receptor; EGF/EGFR: epidermal growth factor/epidermal growth factor receptor; HGF: hepatocyte growth factor; c-MET: mesenchymal–epithelial transition factor; IGF/IGF-1R: insulin-like growth factor/ insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor; TGF: transforming growth factor

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Various pathways mediating the initiation, progression, and migration of CRC, such as Wnt/β-catenin, Notch, Hedgehog, and TGF-β (transforming growth factor-β)/SMAD, as well as those capable of activating signaling cascades, such as phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/AKT or RAS/rapidly accelerated fibrosarcoma (RAF), contain ideal sites for targeted therapy (Fig. 2).27,28 Given the complex downstream signaling and difficulties in completely inhibiting specific biological interactions, not all existing CRC-related pathways can be successfully interfered with, and current data cover only a few pathways in which experimentally identified targeted agents can be proved to be efficient in clinical studies, and a large group of targeted drugs remain in preclinical status or in phase I trials.

The EGFR-related pathway

Activities of the pathway

EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) belongs to the ErbB (erythroblastosis oncogene B)/HER (human epidermal growth factor receptor) family, which consists of four members: ErbB1 (EGFR/HER1), ErbB2 (Neu/HER2), ErbB3 (HER3), and ErbB4 (HER4).29,30 The ErbB receptors were first considered to be related to carcinogenesis almost 30 years ago and are quite unique among the multitude of receptor tyrosine kinases. The impaired kinase activity of HER3/ErbB3 and the absence of a direct HER2/ErbB2 ligand mean that these transmembrane glycoprotein can only be activated after homo- or heterodimerization with HER2, HER3, or HER4 through specific binding, mainly by EGF or TGF-α. Once activated, various downstream intracellular signaling pathways, including the RAS/RAF/MEK/ERK, PI3K/AKT, and JAK/STAT3 (Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) pathways, are triggered to regulate cell growth, survival, and migration.31,32,33

Aberrant expression levels of EGFR and HER have been identified in a group of cancers, including glioma; melanoma; medulloblastoma; gastrointestinal tumors such as esophageal, colorectal, and gastric cancers; and cancers in the lung, breast, bladder, prostate, pancreas, and ovary.29 Overexpression of EGFR has been observed in 15–30% of breast cancers, 60% of NSCLCs (non-small-cell lung cancer), and 25–77% of CRCs, which might also indicate poor prognosis.34,35,36 HER2 overexpression occurs in ~20–30% of breast and ovarian cancers,33,37 in 3.8–36.6% of gastric cancers38 and in 1.3–47.7% of CRCs.39 HER3 showed higher expression in 83% of gastrointestinal tumors and 20% of breast, ovarian, and bladder cancers than in normal tissues;33,40 however, it was prohibited from becoming a drug target given difficulties in finding its ligand. HER4 remains controversial because both cancer-promoting and cancer-suppressing effects have been found.41,42 Therefore, substantial efforts are being made to develop mainstream targeted drugs for HER1 and HER2 while facing potential drug resistance caused by mutations of HER1 and HER2. For instance, mutations of EGFR and HER2 were found in 15–30% of NSCLC samples43,44 and in 1.6% of HER2-positive breast cancer cases.45

The typical ErbB receptor consists of a ligand-binding domain outside the cell, a transmembrane domain, and an intracellular domain with distinct tyrosine residues in the C-terminal region where subsequent phosphorylation may take place upon activation.46

Activation of EGFR triggers various downstream signaling pathways that mediate cellular proliferation or metabolism, playing vital roles in cancer initiation and progression. Activated EGFR initiates plasma recruitment of SOSs (son of sevenless homologs) to achieve RAS-RAF activation, which leads to phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK or MEK) and activation of extracellular signal-related kinase (ERK), which might then translocate inside the nucleus to regulate the expression of transcription factors such as c-FOS and ELK1.47,48,49,50 It is worth mentioning that during RAS-RAF activation, the serine/threonine protein kinase in the RAF family, BRAF (BRAF proto-oncogene, serine/threonine kinase), plays vital roles in the RAS/RAF/MEK pathway. In contrast to RAS mutations, BRAF mutations, mostly comprising the V600E alteration, were found in 5–10% of metastatic CRC cases and cause activation of downstream MAPK regardless of RAS status.51,52,53,54

Activation of PI3K by RAS or direct activation by EGFR transforms the second messenger phosphatidylinositol-bisphosphate into phosphatidylinositol-trisphosphate (PIP3) through phosphorylation. PIP3 interacts with the SH3 domain of serine/threonine kinase PKB (also called AKT) recruited to the cell membrane. AKT plays significant roles in cell growth and apoptosis and works as a vital mediator in the ErbB-related pathway.55,56,57 In addition, the ErbB2-3 heterodimer is the strongest activator of the PI3K/AKT pathway among all the ErbB-dimer family members. Cancer and diabetes are closely related to poorly regulated AKT activity.58,59 AKT regulates cell cycle entry and survival via phosphorylation of forkhead box O, BCL2-associated agonist of cell death, and glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3), thereby preventing cellular apoptosis through mammalian target of rapamycin activation.57,58,59

Another vital protein that influences various cellular biological functions, such as cell motility, growth, differentiation, and membrane ruffle formation, which are mainly activated by EGFR, is phospholipase C-γ1 (PLC-γ1).60,61,62 This 145 kDa protein has one SH3 domain, two pleckstrin homology domains, and two SH2 domains that might interact with EGFR, eventually increasing enzyme activity to produce inositol-triphosphate (IP3) and diacylglycerol (DAG) from hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol-bisphosphate.63,64,65,66,67 IP3 and DAG promote the release of intracellular Ca2+ and activate protein kinase C to promote carcinogenesis.68,69 Moreover, recent studies stated that the SH3 domain of PLC-γ1 might be of great importance in the interaction with EGFR. EGF mediates PLC-γ1 binding to AKT, altering its activity through the SH3 domain.70 In addition, PI3K enhancer, a nuclear GTPase that activates nuclear PI3K activity,71 dynamin-1, and Racl, which might enhance EGF-induced cell proliferation and migration, are regulated by the SH3 domain of PLC-γ1, acting as guanine nucleotide exchange factors.70,72

EGFR might directly bind to and phosphorylate STATs to enable them to dimerize and transfer into the nucleus, where they mediate cell growth, differentiation, and apoptosis by regulating related gene transcription.73,74 In addition, a nonreceptor tyrosine kinase (c-Src) acts on EGFR in an indirect way to govern STATs, which exerts a crucial effect. Overexpression of c-Src and EGFR occurs in many cancer cases, suggesting a close interaction between them and their potential contributions to tumor proliferation. The Src family is a group of nonreceptor tyrosine kinases that overlap with the STAT and PI3K pathways. SRCs enhance EGFR signaling through c-SRC-dependent phosphorylation and c-SRC-EGFR complex formation.75,76

Targeting EGFR and EGFR-related pathways

Methods to target the EGFR pathway typically comprise anti-EGFR monoclonal antibodies and tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) aimed at intracellular kinases (Tables 1 and 2).

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Full size table

Cetuximab and panitumumab

In 1995, the first monoclonal antibody targeted to EGFR with convincing preclinical data was announced. Named cetuximab, it is a chimeric immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody that induces EGFR internalization and degradation once bound to the external domain of EGFR.77 Cetuximab showed great potential in progression-free survival (PFS) improvement in patients with low response to single-agent IRI therapy, according to the BOND trial, which contributed to the FDA approval of cetuximab for metastatic CRC in 2004.78 Moreover, a subsequent study also confirmed that cetuximab treatment prolonged OS and PFS in patients with CRCs when previous treatment with fluoropyrimidine, IRI and OX failed or was contraindicated.79 Combinations of cetuximab with other existing chemotherapies also displayed promising results. The phase III CRYSTAL trial found that cetuximab plus the FOLFIRI regimen had better progression control (8.9 vs. 8 months, hazard ratio (HR) 0.85; p = 0.048) than FOLFIRI alone, although the OS was not significantly different (HR, 0.93; p = 0.31).80 Interestingly, in different studies investigating cetuximab combined with FOLFOX in metastatic patients with CRC,81,82,83 no significant PFS or OS improvement was identified given that the doses in FOLFOX might have differed between studies because of the impact of the crossover design, but this lack of improvements in PFS and OS has also now been ascribed to CRC molecular heterogeneity.84 Maintaining cetuximab alone after a FOLFOX plus cetuximab regimen was not inferior to maintaining combination therapy in terms of PFS, with fewer adverse reactions noted.85 Escalating to the maximal dose of cetuximab based on the intensity of skin rash in the EVEREST trial suggested that an overall response might be achieved but without OS improvement.86

Murine-human chimeric antibodies might cause immunogenic reactions; therefore, the fully humanized antibody panitumumab has been developed, which does not trigger antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity like cetuximab does87 and showed a lower risk of hypersensitivity reactions (0.6–3.0% for panitumumab and 3.5–7.5% for cetuximab).88 The efficacy of panitumumab against CRC was evaluated in the PRIME trial when FOLFOX plus panitumumab was compared with FOLFOX alone, and the combination regimen achieved a better PFS (10 vs. 8.6 months, HR 0.80, p = 0.01) and OS than FOLFOX alone (23.9 vs. 19.7 months, HR = 0.88, p = 0.17), with further demonstrated significance in the updated survival analysis (HR = 0.83, p = 0.003) in patients with metastatic CRC.89,90

Maintenance with panitumumab and 5-FU/LV after panitumumab plus FOLFOX showed numerical improvement in PFS and OS compared with single-agent panitumumab in the retrospective analysis of the PRIME and PEAK trials.91 The toxicity of this combination did not increase, which was confirmed in the VALENTINO trial, in which maintaining single-agent panitumumab appeared to have shorter PFS (HR = 1.55, p = 0.011) than treatment with panitumumab combined with 5-FU/LV.92

Cetuximab and panitumumab are both FDA-approved agents for the first-line treatment of CRC. No inferiority or superiority was identified in the phase III ASPECCT study between these two drugs. Cetuximab resulted in an OS of 10.0 months, and the OS was 10.4 months for panitumumab (HR 0.97, p < 0.0007 for noninferiority), in which no obvious adverse events were noted other than the incidence of grade 3 or 4 hypomagnesemia (3% for cetuximab and 7% for panitumumab).93 This also indicated that antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity was not a major mechanism for these agents. However, in terms of quality-adjusted life-years, panitumumab seemed to be more economically efficient than cetuximab.93

For second-line treatment of CRC or beyond, anti-EGFR agents might be low priority because in several studies cetuximab and panitumumab have been demonstrated to fail to reach statistically better PFS or OS for patients with CRC.94,95,96 In fact, only one study97 reported that panitumumab significantly prolonged PFS (8 vs. 7.3 weeks, HR = 0.54, p < 0.001) compared with best supportive care in patients with chemorefractory CRC with an acceptable rate of adverse events. In general, anti-EGFR agents are among the least attractive choices in second-line treatment, especially compared with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) agents, which will be discussed in a subsequent section.

Notably, subgroup analysis has indicated that both of these anti-EGFR agents are robustly beneficial to those patients with RAS-wild-type tumors in the CRYSTAL, PRIME, and TAILOR trials,80,90,98 even though negative outcomes were experienced in patients with RAS mutations (KRAS and NRAS exon 2, 3, and 4 mutations). Interestingly, left-sided CRC tends to be more enriched for EGFR expression than right-sided CRC, in which MSI or BRAF mutations are predominantly activated.99 This sidedness leads to different clinical outcomes, such that worse OS and PFS have been observed in right-sided CRC than in left-sided CRC regardless of the choice of chemotherapy regimen or targeted agent.100,101 This biological factor has also been validated in anti-EGFR agent trials: in terms of RR, PFS, and OS within RAS-wild-type patients, those with left-sided tumors were expected to have better clinical outcomes than those with right-sided cancers.80,90,98 As demonstrated above, BRAF mutations are independent from RAS mutations and are closely related to a low anti-EGFR response, and both the NCCN and ESMO guidelines recommend using cetuximab and panitumumab in confirmed BRAF-wild-type and RAS-wild-type patients.102

BRAF inhibitors

A higher incidence of mutated BRAF is found in melanoma than in CRC. The efficiency of BRAF inhibitors in BRAF-V600E-mutated melanoma prompted the development of a similar approach in CRC. A few studies investigated blocking BRAF or BRAF/MEK using vemurafenib or dabrafenib or using selective BRAF inhibitors and trametinib; however, a selective MEK inhibitor failed to improve the PFS or OS of patients with metastatic CRC, even though downstream MAPK activity was inhibited after drug administration. Some scholars have suggested that BRAF/MEK blockade might trigger feedback reactivation of EGFR, which would bypass activating MAPK via RAS.103,104,105 Preclinical research indicated that a combination of BRAF inhibitors and an upstream-pathway inhibitor might be superior to BRAF inhibition alone in terms of tumor growth control in BRAF-mutated CRC xenograft models.104,106,107 Subsequent studies focused on the combined use of BRAF inhibitors and EGFR inhibitors.108,109 Promising survival outcomes and response rates were observed in trials using vemurafenib combined with IRI and cetuximab for patients with BRAF-mutant CRC.110,111 In a phase II trial using encorafenib (a BRAF inhibitor) plus cetuximab, with or without alpelisib (ALP), the PFS and OS were improved compared with those seen in historical data.112 A triplet regimen consisting of dabrafenib, trametinib, and panitumumab achieved a better response rate than the doublet regimens (21% vs. 10% for dabrafenib + panitumumab or 0% for trametinib + panitumumab) in patients with BRAF-V600E-mutated CRCs.109 Similar results were reported for the ongoing BEACON trial, in which a triplet regimen of encorafenib, binimetinib (a MEK inhibitor), and cetuximab was well tolerated and exceeded previous efficacy outcomes for BRAF inhibitors.113 New evidence emerged suggesting that a triple regimen of encorafenib, binimetinib, and cetuximab offered significantly better survival benefit for patients with BRAF-mutated metastatic CRC than that achieved historically with a comparable rate of adverse events (OS: 9 vs. 5.4 months, HR = 0.52, p < 0.001; RR: 26% vs. 2%, p < 0.01).113 Second- or third-line regimens treating BRAF-V600E-mutated mCRC now may include anti-EGFR agents combined with vemurafenib + IRI or dabrafenib + trametinib or encorafenib + binimitinib, as recommended by the NCCN.

HER2 inhibitor

As discussed above, HER2 acts similarly to EGFR because it shares many downstream pathways, such as RAS/RAF/MEK and PI3K/AKT, and overexpression of HER provides one explanation for anti-EGFR resistance.114,115,116 Unlike the rate in breast cancer or gastric cancer, the rate of HER2 overexpression is relatively low (2–3%) and is independent of RAS or RAF mutation in patients with CRC.117,118,119 Preclinical studies revealed that HER2 amplification might compensate for EGFR blockade, and combined targeting of HER2 and EGFR inhibited tumor cell proliferation, producing an effect that was stronger than that achieved using either single agent alone.115,118,120 Several clinical trials have been developed to determine whether targeted agents against HER2-positive CRC (determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC), fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), or chromogenic in situ hybridization) can be as effective as those against breast cancer or gastric cancer. A few of these studies using a single HER2-targeted agent, with or without chemotherapy, were terminated early because of a low patient response rate or insignificant patient survival benefits.121,122 By contrast, dual-targeted HER2 therapy was found to be promising in preclinical research.118,123 In the phase II MyPathway trial, doublet treatment with trastuzumab, a classic HER2 inhibitor, and pertuzumab, a HER2 dimerization inhibitor, both of which are FDA approved in HER-positive breast cancer treatment, helped patients with HER2-amplified metastatic CRC to gain an overall response rate of 32%, a PFS of 2.9 months and an OS of 11.5 months, which may be even better in patients with RAS-wild-type CRCs (PFS: 5.3 months and OS: 14 months OS).124 Another dual anti-HER2 agent combination of trastuzumab and lapatinib (a TKI targeting both EGFR and HER2) against metastatic CRC was studied in the phase II HERACLES trial and reached an overall response rate of 30%, a PFS of 21 weeks and an OS of 46 weeks.125 In addition, this combination was capable of overcoming resistance to pertuzumab and trastuzumab doublet treatment.126 Given the low rate of HER2 overexpression and difficulties in identifying suitable dual-HER2 regimens, the HERACLES trial took great pains to find a potentially effective doublet regimen consisting of lapatinib;125 thus, targeting HER2 might act as a backup regimen for patients with RAS-wild-type HER2-positive CRC. Notably, left-sided colon tumors tend to overexpress HER2 more than those on the right side. Thus, anti-HER2 therapy might offer a new choice for anti-EGFR-resistant CRC.125

EGFR resistance

Accumulating evidence shows that even patients with RAS-wild-type CRC might not benefit from EGFR-targeted therapy, which suggests that identifying certain factors predicting low anti-EGFR therapy response and introducing other agents or strategies to overcome resistance would be beneficial. Some of these factors are innate or intrinsic, some are acquired after anti-EGFR treatment, and some may occur in both situations.

RAS mutations

RAS mutations are found in nearly half of patients with CRC, most of whom also harbor KRAS or NRAS mutations (36% for KRAS and 3% for NRAS).127 However, data showed that not all KRAS-mutated patients developed EGFR resistance: 85–90% of patients had mutations in KRAS codons 12 and 13 (exon 2), which largely indicate EGFR therapy resistance.128,129,130 For other sites, such as KRAS G13D, the connection with drug resistance is uncertain.131,132 Moreover, even patients with wild-type KRAS exon 2 might have other RAS mutations in sites such as KRAS exons 3 and 4 and NRAS exons 2, 3, and 4, which are related to negative benefits from cetuximab or panitumumab treatment.84,133

PI3K mutations and PTEN loss

PI3K (encoding phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate 3-kinase) mutations occur mostly in exons 9 and 20; mutations in exon 9 or exon 20 are found in 10–18% of patients with metastatic CRC and lead to constitutive activation of the downstream pathway to reverse EGFR-blocking effects in patients with CRC (response rate of 0% vs. 36.8% in mutated vs. nonmutated patients).134,135 PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog) is a suppressor in the PI3K/AKT pathway, the loss of which resulted in long-term tumor growth via activated PI3K/AKT and was found in 20–40% of patients with metastatic CRC.136 Theoretically, PTEN loss might be associated with EGFR blockade resistance; however, data from clinical studies remain contradictory.137,138 Given the low occurrence rate of these mutations in CRC, large trials are required for better confirmation.

EGFR alterations

Mutations in EGFR or low expression of EGFR or AREG (amphiregulin)/EREG (epiregulin), key ligands in the EGFR-specific autocrine loop, cause loss of target for anti-EGFR therapy, representing one of the major ways by which EGFR resistance develops in NSCLC and CRC. Although high EGFR levels might correlate slightly with stronger efficacy of anti-EGFR therapy, patients with low EGFR gene expression may benefit less from EGFR blockers than patients with high EGFR gene expression.139,140 Clinical studies also found that low AREG/EREG levels identified a low cetuximab response rate and vice versa.141,142 EGFR mutated sites vary, and the uncommon ones are linked to worse prognosis.136 For the common mutations, the T790M mutation is considered to be a primary alteration inducing EGFR TKI resistance, which is frequently observed in patients with NSCLC.143 For patients with CRCs, the EGFR S492R mutation in the extracellular domain of EGFR may be found in those receiving cetuximab and was responsible for their low drug response; however, they may still respond to panitumumab.144 New agents are being developed to maximize the affinity for mutated EGFR, such as Sym044145,146 and MM151,147 which might simultaneously target several different sites of the EGFR extracellular domain to overcome resistance to cetuximab or panitumumab, and both Sym044 and MM151 are in preclinical studies and clinical trials.

Compensative activation of alternative pathways, such as IGF-1R (insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor), JAK/STAT, c-MET, VEGF, and HER2, is responsible for acquired anti-EGFR resistance. Similar to EGFR, IGF-1R is bound by IGF1 or 2 and may activate RAS/RAF and PI3K/AKT signaling. Increased IGF-1R activation was noted in patients with CRC receiving cetuximab and was associated with a significantly lower response rate than that seen in patients without IGF-1R activation148 (22% vs. 65%, p = 0.002). This effect has also been observed in patients with breast cancer;149 thus, introducing an IGF-1R inhibitor combined with an EGFR blocker might be a practical solution. A phase III trial, combining the IGF-1R inhibitor dalotuzumab with cetuximab, showed numerically superior PFS and OS improvement in patients with CRC with IGF-1R-positive tumors,150 although preclinical studies did not support noticeable benefits from anti-IGF-1R treatment,151 which implied that more steps are needed for IGF-1R targeting. Persistent JAK/STAT activation might also be vital for EGFR-targeted resistance, although the increased level of STAT3 phosphorylation seen in in vivo and in vitro studies was related to gefitinib resistance, which could be overcome by silencing STAT3 in CRC cells.152,153

Bypass amplification and activation

c-MET and VEGF amplification and activation are discussed in the following parts of this review.

Another technique to develop novel anti-EGFR agents is to enclose conventional EGFR blockers within other agents such as nanoparticles, liposomes, and other protein-based drug delivery systems, which have shown promising tumor affinity and drug efficacy in several preclinical studies.154

The VEGF/VEFGR pathway

About the pathway

Angiogenesis, a physiological process by which new vessels form or reform from existing vessels, plays a vital role in tumor initiation, growth, and metastasis. Angiogenesis is also under complex regulation involving various proangiogenic and antiangiogenic factors, such as VEGF, fibroblast growth factors (FGFs), TGF-α, TGF-β, platelet-derived endothelial cell growth factor (PDGF), and angiopoietins produced from cancer or stromal cells.155,156,157 The relationship between neo-vessels and carcinogenesis remained theoretical until the identification of VEGF-A (also known as VEGF) and the production of its monoclonal antibody inhibitor, which finally demonstrated the tumor-promoting effect of angiogenesis.158 The VEGF family consists of five members (VEGF-A, -B, -C, and -D and placental growth factor (PIGF)), which may bind to endothelial cells via tyrosine kinase VEGF receptors. Vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFRs) are divided into three types, VEGFR-1, -2, and -3, along with the non-tyrosine kinase coreceptors neuropilin-1 (NP-1) and NP-2. The VEGF family may also interact with other proteins, such as integrins,157,159,160,161,162 to regulate angiogenesis, for example, by guiding the migration of endothelial cells.163 Among the complicated and diverse interactions between VEGF and VEGFR, VEGF-A, VEGF-B, and PIGF contribute predominantly to angiogenesis, while VEGF-C and VEGF-D tend to regulate lymphangiogenesis. VEGF-A and VEGF-B mainly bind to VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2, which are mostly expressed on vascular endothelial cells and on some nonendothelial cells.164 VEGFR-3 is bound by VEGF-C and VEGF-D with greatest affinity and is expressed on endothelial lymphatic cells.165

VEGFR-1 is a 180 kDa member of the receptor tyrosine kinase family expressed on many kinds of cells, including epithelial cells, inflammatory cells, and cancer cells. VEGFR-1 has high affinity for VEGF-1 and relatively low affinity for VEGF-2 and PIGF. Interestingly, VEGFR-1 seems to make little contribution to cell proliferation during vascular formation. Instead, it regulates cell differentiation and migration, especially for epithelial cells,163,166 and promotes differentiation of epithelial cells during early vascular construction.166 In addition, activation of VEGFR-1 under pathological conditions in inflammatory cells mediates the activation of several downstream pathways, such as PI3K/AKT/MAPK/ERK, leading to upregulation of inflammatory cytokine production (TNF-α and some interleukins (IL-1β, IL-6, and IL-8)) and inflammatory cell migration. The detailed function of VEGFR-1 is not fully understood; however, it is believed to be a regulatory factor in angiogenesis. VEGFR-1 favors VEGF-A over VEGFR-2, and the interaction of PIGF with VEGFR-1 might allow VEGF-A to bind to VEGFR-2. Therefore, VEGFR-1 works as a decoy regulator to control the amount of free VEGF-A available to activate VEGFR-2 when angiogenic effects appear to be mediated by VEGF-A/VEGFR-2.164,167,168

In contrast to VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2 is actively involved in vascular formation. It has a molecular mass of 200–230 kDa and is mostly expressed on blood and lymphatic epithelial cells.166 VEGFR-2 mainly interacts with VEGF-A, and activated VEGFR-2 leads to phosphorylation of tyrosine residues and activation of various pathways, including the PLCγ and RAS/RAF/ERK/MAPK pathways, by which epithelial cell growth is promoted, and the PI3K/AKT pathway, by which cell apoptosis may be avoided.156,157,161,163,166 Moreover, adhesion molecules such as cadherins and β-catenin, which are activated by the PI3K and MAPK pathways, may further interact with VEGFR-2, causing deterioration of intercellular junction stability and epithelial cell cytoskeleton reorganization, thus elevating vascular permeability. Vascular permeability is also enhanced by epithelial cell production of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and nitric oxide (NO) via AKT protein kinase activation.169 The above observations indicate the proangiogenic effect of VEGFR-2 in physiological and pathological conditions. Activated VEGFR-2 contributes to the differentiation, proliferation, migration, and apoptosis resistance of epithelial cells, thereby increasing vascular tubulogenesis and permeability, which is very important for cancer angiogenesis and progression.

VEGFR-3, activated by VEGF-C and VEGF-D, contributes relatively independently to lymphatic vessel formation.170,171 Activated VEGFR-3 mediates the differentiation, migration, proliferation and survival of lymphatic endothelial cells by activating the RAS/MAPK/ERK pathway and the PI3K–AKT/PKB pathway.169,170,171 Although the VEGFR-3 expression level in tumor cells remains controversial, high levels of VEGF-C and VEGF-D have been observed in tumors with lymphatic metastasis, which is considered a potential explanation for cancer migration through lymphatic vessels.172

VEGF levels and VEGFR activity are elevated in patients with CRC and other cancers and are considered to be related to poor prognosis.173,174,175,176 Some tumor cells produce VEGF and express VEGFR, suggesting that VEGF works as both an autocrine factor and an endocrine factor in this situation. Increased VEGF levels were observed in very early stages of colorectal neoplasia, e.g., adenoma, and were even higher in later stages of cancer, especially in the metastatic stage.177,178 VEGF regulation is complex in CRC. Mutated K-RAS and p53, expression of COX-2, and hypoxia inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) induced by hypoxia from high tumor cell density might all contribute to VEGF-VEGFR activity alteration, resulting in cancer growth and migration.178,179,180,181 The proangiogenic effects of VEGF-VEGFR are important both in local sites supporting tumor progression and migration and in metastatic sites for neovascularization to support cancer survival and growth; therefore, anti-VEGF/VEGFR therapy might be developed to target both steps in tumor metastasis.

Targeting angiogenesis

Bevacizumab: the milestone

The landmark trials based on antiangiogenic therapy for CRC were initiated in 2004, comprising the phase II and III AVF2107 trials, which confirmed the superiority of chemotherapy (IRI, 5-FU, and leucovorin) plus bevacizumab over chemotherapy plus placebo.182 Bevacizumab is a humanized IgG monoclonal antibody targeted to VEGF-A that, according to the AVF2107 trial, improves both PFS and OS in metastatic CRC (RR: 44% vs. 34.8%; OS: 20.3 vs. 15.6 months; HR: 0.66, p < 0.001; PFS: 10.6 vs. 6.2 months; HR: 0.54; p < 0.001). Therefore, the FDA-approved bevacizumab as the first VEGF-targeted agent for metastatic CRC, even though several trials investigating bevacizumab plus monotherapy or FOLFOX/FOXFIRI showed only a partial significant improvement in either OS or PFS.182,183,184,185,186,187 Using bevacizumab may lead to 10% more grade 3–5 adverse events, such as hypertension or leukopenia,188 while it remained relatively safe and effective when treating elderly patients with CRC (age over 70 years old) in the phase III AVEX trial.185 Further investigation found that both patients with KRAS mutations and those with a wild-type genotype may benefit from bevacizumab.189,190,191 Both left- and right-sided colon tumors respond well to bevacizumab.191 Two independent trials stated no difference in terms of efficacy against metastatic CRC between FOLFOX and FOLFIRI combined with bevacizumab.192,193 Yet interestingly, a bevacizumab-containing regimen seemed to have better efficacy with the triplet FOLFOXIRI regimen than FOLFIRI alone (PFS: 12.3 vs. 9.7 months; HR: 0.77; p = 0.006; OS: 29.8 vs. 25.8 months; HR: 0.80; p = 0.03), although the latter doublet regimen had fewer adverse reactions according to the TRIBE trial.187

In addition to first-line application of bevacizumab, various trials have validated its efficacy in the second-line setting. Longer PFS (7.3 vs. 4.7 months, HR = 0.61, p < 0.001) and OS (12.9 vs. 10.8 months, HR = 0.75, p = 0.0011), as well as a better response rate (22.7% vs. 8.6%, p = 0.0001), were seen in the E3200 trial with a combination of FOLFOX and bevacizumab than with FOLFOX alone for patients with CRC who progressed after FOLFOX therapy.194 Similar numerical differences were also noted in the comparison with bevacizumab alone. Even so, continuation on bevacizumab for those who progressed after first-line chemotherapy was still helpful for PFS (5.7 vs. 4.1 months, HR = 0.68, p < 0.001) and OS (11.2 vs. 9.9 months, HR = 0.81, p = 0.0062) improvement compared with standard chemotherapy alone in the phase III ML18147 trial.195

In terms of maintenance, that is, bevacizumab after first-line chemotherapy in stable CRC, a series of trials demonstrated that anti-VEGF agents might be quite attractive. The prospective and observational BRiTE study indicated that bevacizumab continuation dramatically improved the OS of patients with CRC (31.8 vs. 19.9 months, HR = 0.48, p < 0.001) in comparison with no maintenance.196 Continuation of CAP and bevacizumab significantly prolonged the progression time in patients after first-line XELOX plus bevacizumab compared with observation (11.7 vs. 8.5 months, HR = 0.67, p < 0.0001)186 regardless of RAS/BRAF mutation status and mismatch repair (MMR) status.197

Trends of longer OS (23.2 vs. 20.0 months, HR = 1.05, p = 0.65 in the MACRO trial and 25.4 vs. 23.8 months, HR = 0.83, p = 0.2 in the SAKK (Swiss Group for Clinical Cancer Research) trial) have been observed for maintenance bevacizumab plus XELOX over bevacizumab alone in the MACRO trial198 and for maintaining single-agent bevacizumab therapy compared with no treatment in the SAKK trial.199 No inferiority has been found for maintenance of bevacizumab alone over bevacizumab plus 5-FU or continuation of bevacizumab plus CAP over bevacizumab plus XELOX.200,201

Emerging anti-VEGFR agents

Until now, only bevacizumab has been FDA approved as a first- and second-line VEGF-targeted agent for CRC, although various novel agents are emerging, and some of them have been approved for second-line treatment of CRC.

Aflibercept is a VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2 extracellular domain recombinant fusion protein that acts as a ligand trap targeting VEGF-A, VEGF-B, and PIGF. Aflibercept has a stronger affinity for VEGF-A than bevacizumab.202 The single-agent benefit of aflibercept seems to be limited,202 while chemo-combinations showed great potential according to the phase III VALOUR trial, in which the addition of aflibercept after OX or bevacizumab in metastatic CRC patients receiving FOXFIRI gained a better response (19.8% vs. 11.1%) as well as a longer PFS (6.9 vs. 4.7 months, HR = 0.76; p < 0.001) and OS (13.5 vs. 12.1 months, HR = 0.82; p = 0.0032) than FOXFIRI plus placebo.203 However, in terms of the first-line setting, as in the phase II AFFIRM trial, the combination of aflibercept with FOLFOX did not result in noticeable benefits in PFS or response rate, but did result in increased adverse event rates. Therefore, aflibercept should remain a second-line recommended CRC agent.204

Ramucirumab, a fully humanized monoclonal VEGFR-2-targeted IgG antibody, is another FDA-approved drug for second-line treatment of metastatic CRC based on the phase III RAISE trial. In this second-line-setting trial, a combination of ramucirumab and FOLFIRI significantly prolonged PFS (5.7 vs. 4.5 months; HR = 0.79, p < .0005) and OS (13.3 vs. 11.7 months, HR = 0.84, p = 0.022) compared with FOLFIRI-placebo.205 Similar to the findings with aflibercept, a phase II trial showed that the FOLFOX regimen may not benefit from addition to ramucirumab in terms of PFS.206

TKIs have become an appealing choice for patients with anti-EGFR-resistant NSCLC, while in patients with CRC, very few drugs have proven to be effective. Regorafenib, a TKI with multiple targets, such as VEGFR, PDGFR (platelet-derived growth factor receptor), FGFR (fibroblast growth factor receptor), and BRAF, was approved by the FDA to treat metastatic CRC. A first-line study concerning regorafenib plus FOLFOX in CRC found no improvement in the response rate compared with FOLFOX plus placebo.207 However, for refractory metastatic CRC treatment, in the phase III CORRECT trial,208 better median OS (6.4 vs. 5.0 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.0052) and PFS (1.9 vs. 1.7 months, HR = 0.49, p < 0.0001) were achieved using regorafenib than using placebo, which has also been validated in an Asian population in the CONCUR trial (PFS: 3.2 vs. 1.7 months, HR = 0.31, p < 0.0001; OS: 8.8 vs. 6.3 months, HR = 0.55, p = 0.0002).209

Other agents are being developed quickly. The phase III FRESCO trial supported fruquintinib, a TKI with the ability to block VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2, and VEGFR-3, as a recommended choice for chemotherapy against refractory metastatic CRC. In this Chinese-based study, OS (9.3 vs. 6.6 months, HR = 0.65, p < 0.001) and PFS (3.7 vs. 1.8 months, HR = 0.26, p < 0.001) were significantly prolonged with fruquintinib compared with placebo,210 which led to approval of by the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) also known as NMPA (National Medical Products Administration). Famitinib is another TKI targeting the c-KIT receptor, VEGFR-2, and VEGFR-3, PDGFR, and RET that is being investigated in an ongoing phase II study, which has so far shown an improved PFS (2.8 vs. 1.5 months, HR = 0.58, p = 0.0034) and disease control rate (57.58% vs. 30.91%, p = 0.0023) for Famitinib, with results concerning OS waiting to be reported.211

New TKIs expressing remarkable antitumor effects in preclinical studies have produced unsatisfying OS and RR values in recent reports; however, PFS may be prolonged by drugs such as the VEGFR-2- and FGFR-targeted brivanib212 and cediranib, a TKI targeted to all three VEGFRs and PDGFR that failed to present efficacy towards CRC control in the phase II and III HORIZON study,213,214 as did nintedanib, a TKI with the ability to block all VEGFRs, FGFR1-3, PDGFR-α, and PDGFR-β, according to the phase III LUME-Colon 1 trial.215 Other on-market TKIs, such as the gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST)-targeted imatinib and sunitinib and the squamous cell carcinoma-targeted erlotinib and gefitinib, have no indication or supporting data for treating CRC. The major agents for antiangiogenic therapy under clinical investigation in CRC are summarized in Tables 3 and 4.

Full size table

Full size table

Resistance to antiangiogenic therapy

Resistance to anti-VEGF has been observed in various cancer types, including CRC, which may be explained by compensatory activation of other signaling pathways and alternative excretion of angiogenesis-related proteins.

The fact that PIGF is upregulated and overexpressed in CRC cases that are resistant to antiangiogenic therapies216 suggests that PIGF is a crucial factor in overcoming anti-VEGF resistance, which might explain why aflibercept performed better than bevacizumab in xenograft models.217

The angiopoietin/TIE (tyrosine kinase with Ig-like and EGF-like domains) signaling RTK pathway contributes to vascular formation and stabilization by mediating downstream the RAS/RAF and PI3K/AKT pathways, which may be negatively regulated by angiopoietin-2. Abnormally increased levels of angiopoietin-2 have been noticed in a wide range of cancers, including CRC, and are associated with resistance to bevacizumab.218 Targeting both VEGF and angiopoietin-2 in preclinical studies helped control proliferation and progression in cancers that were resistant to VEGF-targeted therapies.219,220,221 The VEGF-A and angiopoietin-2 cotargeting agent vanucizumab, which inhibited growth in a CRC xenograft model,222 has passed through a phase I study with acceptable safety and encouraging anticancer effects.223

The FGF/FGFR pathway is important in both normal and cancer tissues for cell growth, survival, and migration. Upregulation of the FGF/FGFR pathway has also been observed in anti-VEGF-resistant cases.224,225,226 Dual blockade of FGF/FGFR and VEGF/VEGFR in preclinical studies displayed positive effects against tumor cells, while in clinical trials, agents such as nintedanib and the FGF-VEGF dual blocker dovitinib failed to benefit anti-VEGF-refractory patients.215,227

Compensatory activation of the c-MET pathway is the mechanism most related to the loss of anti-VEGF agent effectiveness.228 Single-agent c-MET inhibition might be helpful, as we shall discuss in the following section. However, CRC-based evidence for c-MET and VEGF dual targeting remains rare, and a study on NSCLC stated no better effect by combined blocking.229

A number of studies found factors such as a high level of TGF-β,230,231 upregulation of IL-1,231 downregulation of MIF (macrophage migration inhibitory factor),232 and overexpression of PDGFR233 in a wide range of VEGF-blockade-resistant cancers, implying possible connections to antiangiogenic therapeutic resistance; however, a lack of adequate data on silencing these factors in clinical cases has limited their further confirmation for CRC therapy.

Anti-EGFR or antiangiogenic therapies?

Both anti-EGFR and antiangiogenic therapies have demonstrated decent effects against metastatic CRC; however, which one is the preferred first-line choice for a more precise and personalized targeted agent strategy has been a matter of intense debate. The first head-to-head comparison study was the phase III FIRE-3 trial, which compared bevacizumab and cetuximab in a combined regimen with FOLFIRI. No obvious difference was discovered in the response rate or PFS for both arms, yet OS was prolonged in the cetuximab arm (28.7 vs. 25 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.017).189 Similar results were observed in a recent phase III trial investigating these two agents plus FOLFOX/FOLFIRI therapy, which reported few differences in the response rate, PFS, and OS between the two groups.191 The PEAK trial, focusing on panitumumab and bevacizumab with FOLFOX, stated that the response rate and PFS seemed alike, and a slightly longer OS for panitumumab than bevacizumab (34.2 vs. 24.3 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.017) was noted.190 Further analysis in subgroups emphasized the importance of an individualized strategy. RAS mutation status might influence the efficacy of anti-EGFR therapy, but not that of anti-VEGF therapy; therefore, subgroup studies concerning gene information have been carried out. Cetuximab appeared to be the better choice for RAS-wild-type patients in the FIRE-3 post hoc analysis trial, given the increased rate of objective response (72.0% vs. 56.1%, p = 0.0029) and early tumor shrinkage (68.2% vs. 49.1%, p = 0.0005) that were achieved in the cetuximab arm in these patients.234 A recommendation that anti-EGFR over anti-VEGF is favored in RAS-wild-type patients has also been proposed via a meta-analysis that included the FIRE-3, CALGB, and PEAK trials.235 In addition, sidedness has been a critical factor that has marked impact on prognosis.236 Left-sided tumors responded more to cetuximab than to bevacizumab (38.3 vs. 28 months, HR = 0.63, p = 0.02), while those on the right side of the colon tended to behave oppositely (8.3 vs. 23 months, HR = 1.44, p = 0.28) in the FIRE-3 trial,

Источник: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41392-020-0116-z

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Comprehensive review of targeted therapy for colorectal cancer

Abstract

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is among the most lethal and prevalent malignancies in the world and was responsible for nearly 881,000 cancer-related deaths in 2018. Surgery and chemotherapy have long been the first choices for cancer patients. However, the prognosis of CRC has never been satisfying, especially for patients with metastatic lesions. Targeted therapy is a new optional approach that has successfully prolonged overall survival for CRC patients. Following successes with the anti-EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) agent cetuximab and the anti-angiogenesis agent bevacizumab, new agents blocking different critical pathways as well as immune checkpoints are emerging at an unprecedented rate. Guidelines worldwide are currently updating the recommended targeted drugs on the basis of the increasing number of high-quality clinical trials. This review provides an overview of existing CRC-targeted agents and their underlying mechanisms, as well as a discussion of their limitations and future trends.

Introduction

Current treatment for colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer (CRC) ranks as the second most lethal cancer and the third most prevalent malignant tumor worldwide. In 2018, 1.8 million new CRC cases arose, and 881,000 deaths were reported, which accounted for nearly 10% of new cancer cases and deaths worldwide,1 and the number of new cases may increase to nearly 2.5 million in 2035.2 According to statistics in the USA, the death rate declined by ~50% in 2016 (13.7 per 10,000 patients) compared with that in 1970 (29.2 per 10,000 patients) because of the rapid development of screening methods and improved treatment methods. However, this trend seems to be observed only in highly developed countries.2 Meanwhile, the 5-year survival rate for CRC is ~64%, but drops to 12% for metastatic CRC, and further investigation is still required to develop effective approaches for medical intervention.3

Given the advances in primary and adjuvant treatments, the survival time in CRC has been improving. Typically, the ideal CRC treatment is to achieve complete removal of the tumor and metastases, which mostly requires surgical intervention.4 However, despite the emergence of numerous screening programs to reduce CRC incidence, nearly a quarter of CRCs are diagnosed at an advanced stage with metastases, and 20% of the remaining cases may develop metachronous metastases, which result in difficulties in curative surgical control and subsequent tumor-related deaths.5,6,7,8 For those patients with unresectable lesions or who are intolerant to surgery, the goal is maximum shrinkage of the tumor and suppression of further tumor spread and growth, and radiotherapy and chemotherapy are the leading strategies for controlling disease in such patients. Of note, in some cases, chemotherapy or radiotherapy might be applied before or after surgery as neoadjuvant or adjuvant treatment to maximally reduce and stabilize the tumor.9,10,11,12

Chemotherapy

Current chemotherapy includes both single-agent therapy, which is mainly fluoropyrimidine (5-FU)-based, and multiple-agent regimens containing one or several drugs, including oxaliplatin (OX), irinotecan (IRI), and capecitabine (CAP or XELODA or XEL). Although studies have argued that first-line single-agent therapy is not inferior to combined regimens in terms of overall survival (OS),13,14 the combined therapy regimens FOLFOX (5-FU+OX), FOXFIRI (5-FU+IRI), XELOX or CAPOX (CAP+OX), and CAPIRI (CAP+OX) remain the mainstream approaches in first-line treatment, while patients with poor performance or at low risk of deterioration are recommended to receive single-agent therapy. When choosing additive agents, efficacy appears to be similar, and only adverse events may differ among different regimens.12,15,16,17 Emerging evidence does not support stronger efficacy in the multiple-agent regimen FOLOXIRI (5-FU+OX+IRI), which is infrequently applied because of its potential increased toxicity.18,19 Nonetheless, data from research performed in recent decades show that using chemotherapy in patients with CRC, especially those with metastases, has pushed their OS time to almost 20 months, resulting in chemotherapy becoming the backbone of CRC treatment.15,20,21 However, chemotherapy is associated with certain limitations, such as existing systemic toxicity, unsatisfying response rate, unpredictable innate and acquired resistance, and low tumor-specific selectivity. Therefore, massive investments have been pledged to develop new approaches to refine or even replace existing CRC chemotherapy.

Targeted therapy

The idea of molecular targeted therapy has a relatively long history. The concept of a chemical that specifically targets a microorganism was first proposed in the early 1900s and expanded to cancer treatment in 1988,22 and this concept was renewed and has flourished in the past 20 years.23

Targeted therapies can work on cancerous cells by directly inhibiting cell proliferation, differentiation, and migration. The tumor microenvironment, including local blood vessels and immune cells, might also be altered by targeted drugs to impede tumor growth and enact stronger immune surveillance and attack. Small molecules, such as monoclonal antibodies, are major players in targeted therapies.24,25,26 Small molecules are a group of molecules with a molecular weight <900 Da that might penetrate into cells, mostly working within cells to inactivate selected enzymes, thereby interfering with tumor cell growth and even triggering apoptosis. Cyclin-dependent kinases, proteasomes, and poly ADP-ribose polymerase make up most of the molecular targets. Carfilzomib for multiple myeloma, ribociclib for metastatic breast cancer, and rucaparib for BRCA-positive ovarian cancer are a few examples.23 For targets outside cells, such as cell surface receptors or membrane-bound sites, monoclonal antibodies or therapeutic antibodies can recognize and bind them to directly regulate downstream cell cycle progression and cell death. In addition, certain monoclonal antibodies work on cells other than cancer cells, such as immune cells, which helps to manipulate the immune system to attack human cancer.

Landscape of current CRC-targeted therapy

The first targeted agent for CRC approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was cetuximab in 2004, followed by bevacizumab in the same year, and emerging FDA-approved targeted drugs for CRC have been brought to market successively since then, with more on the way (Fig. 1). Numerous agents have been developed and brought into preclinical and clinical trials. The list of recommended CRC-targeted agents from guidelines such as those from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) is being updated quickly, given the unprecedented speed of the emergence of large trials (Fig. 2).

VEGF: vascular endothelial growth factor; VEGFR: vascular endothelial growth factor receptor; EGFR: epidermal growth factor receptor

Full size image

CRC: colorectal cancer; VEGF/VEGFR: vascular endothelial growth factor/vascular endothelial growth factor receptor; EGF/EGFR: epidermal growth factor/epidermal growth factor receptor; HGF: hepatocyte growth factor; c-MET: mesenchymal–epithelial transition factor; IGF/IGF-1R: insulin-like growth factor/ insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor; TGF: transforming growth factor

Full size image

Various pathways mediating the initiation, progression, and migration of CRC, such as Wnt/β-catenin, Notch, Hedgehog, and TGF-β (transforming growth factor-β)/SMAD, as well as those capable of activating signaling cascades, such as phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/AKT or RAS/rapidly accelerated fibrosarcoma (RAF), contain ideal sites for targeted therapy (Fig. 2).27,28 Given the complex downstream signaling and difficulties in completely inhibiting specific biological interactions, not all existing CRC-related pathways can be successfully interfered with, and current data cover only a few pathways in which experimentally identified targeted agents can be proved to be efficient in clinical studies, and a large group of targeted drugs remain in preclinical status or in phase I trials.

The EGFR-related pathway

Activities of the pathway

EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) belongs to the ErbB (erythroblastosis oncogene B)/HER (human epidermal growth factor receptor) family, which consists of four members: ErbB1 (EGFR/HER1), ErbB2 (Neu/HER2), ErbB3 (HER3), and ErbB4 (HER4).29,30 The ErbB receptors were first considered to be related to carcinogenesis almost 30 years ago and are quite unique among the multitude of receptor tyrosine kinases. The impaired kinase activity of HER3/ErbB3 and the absence of a direct HER2/ErbB2 ligand mean that these transmembrane glycoprotein can only be activated after homo- or heterodimerization with HER2, HER3, or HER4 through specific binding, mainly by EGF or TGF-α. Once activated, various downstream intracellular signaling pathways, including the RAS/RAF/MEK/ERK, PI3K/AKT, and JAK/STAT3 (Janus kinase/signal transducer and activator of transcription 3) pathways, are triggered to regulate cell growth, survival, and migration.31,32,33

Aberrant expression levels of EGFR and HER have been identified in a group of cancers, including glioma; melanoma; medulloblastoma; gastrointestinal tumors such as esophageal, colorectal, and gastric cancers; and cancers in the lung, breast, bladder, prostate, pancreas, and ovary.29 Overexpression of EGFR has been observed in 15–30% of breast cancers, 60% of NSCLCs (non-small-cell lung cancer), and 25–77% of CRCs, which might also indicate poor prognosis.34,35,36 HER2 overexpression occurs in ~20–30% of breast and ovarian cancers,33,37 in 3.8–36.6% of gastric cancers38 and in 1.3–47.7% of CRCs.39 HER3 showed higher expression in 83% of gastrointestinal tumors and 20% of breast, ovarian, and bladder cancers than in normal tissues;33,40 however, it was prohibited from becoming a drug target given difficulties in finding its ligand. HER4 remains controversial because both cancer-promoting and cancer-suppressing effects have been found.41,42 Therefore, substantial efforts are being made to develop mainstream targeted drugs for HER1 and HER2 while facing potential drug resistance caused by mutations of HER1 and HER2. For instance, mutations of EGFR and HER2 were found in 15–30% of NSCLC samples43,44 and in 1.6% of HER2-positive breast cancer cases.45

The typical ErbB receptor consists of a ligand-binding domain outside the cell, a transmembrane domain, and an intracellular domain with distinct tyrosine residues in the C-terminal region where subsequent phosphorylation may take place upon activation.46

Activation of EGFR triggers various downstream signaling pathways that mediate cellular proliferation or metabolism, playing vital roles in cancer initiation and progression. Activated EGFR initiates plasma recruitment of SOSs (son of sevenless homologs) to achieve RAS-RAF activation, which leads to phosphorylation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK or MEK) and activation of extracellular signal-related kinase (ERK), which might then translocate inside the nucleus to regulate the expression of transcription factors such as c-FOS and ELK1.47,48,49,50 It is worth mentioning that during RAS-RAF activation, the serine/threonine protein kinase in the RAF family, BRAF (BRAF proto-oncogene, serine/threonine kinase), plays vital roles in the RAS/RAF/MEK pathway. In contrast to RAS mutations, BRAF mutations, mostly comprising the V600E alteration, were found in 5–10% of metastatic CRC cases and cause activation of downstream MAPK regardless of RAS status.51,52,53,54

Activation of PI3K by RAS or direct activation by EGFR transforms the second messenger phosphatidylinositol-bisphosphate into phosphatidylinositol-trisphosphate (PIP3) through phosphorylation. PIP3 interacts with the SH3 domain of serine/threonine kinase PKB (also called AKT) recruited to the cell membrane. AKT plays significant roles in cell growth and apoptosis and works as a vital mediator in the ErbB-related pathway.55,56,57 In addition, the ErbB2-3 heterodimer is the strongest activator of the PI3K/AKT pathway among all the ErbB-dimer family members. Cancer and diabetes are closely related to poorly regulated AKT activity.58,59 AKT regulates cell cycle entry and survival via phosphorylation of forkhead box O, BCL2-associated agonist of cell death, and glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3), thereby preventing cellular apoptosis through mammalian target of rapamycin activation.57,58,59

Another vital protein that influences various cellular biological functions, such as cell motility, growth, differentiation, and membrane ruffle formation, which are mainly activated by EGFR, is phospholipase C-γ1 (PLC-γ1).60,61,62 This 145 kDa protein has one SH3 domain, two pleckstrin homology domains, and two SH2 domains that might interact with EGFR, eventually increasing enzyme activity to produce inositol-triphosphate (IP3) and diacylglycerol (DAG) from hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol-bisphosphate.63,64,65,66,67 IP3 and DAG promote the release of intracellular Ca2+ and activate protein kinase C to promote carcinogenesis.68,69 Moreover, recent studies stated that the SH3 domain of PLC-γ1 might be of great importance in the interaction with EGFR. EGF mediates PLC-γ1 binding to AKT, altering its activity through the SH3 domain.70 In addition, PI3K enhancer, a nuclear GTPase that activates nuclear PI3K activity,71 dynamin-1, and Racl, which might enhance EGF-induced cell proliferation and migration, are regulated by the SH3 domain of PLC-γ1, acting as guanine nucleotide exchange factors.70,72

EGFR might directly bind to and phosphorylate STATs to enable them to dimerize and transfer into the nucleus, where they mediate cell growth, differentiation, and apoptosis by regulating related gene transcription.73,74 In addition, a nonreceptor tyrosine kinase (c-Src) acts on EGFR in an indirect way to govern STATs, which exerts a crucial effect. Overexpression of c-Src and EGFR occurs in many cancer cases, suggesting a close interaction between them and their potential contributions to tumor proliferation. The Src family is a group of nonreceptor tyrosine kinases that overlap with the STAT and PI3K pathways. SRCs enhance EGFR signaling through c-SRC-dependent phosphorylation and c-SRC-EGFR complex formation.75,76

Targeting EGFR and EGFR-related pathways

Methods to target the EGFR pathway typically comprise anti-EGFR monoclonal antibodies and tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) aimed at intracellular kinases (Tables 1 and 2).

Full size table

Full size table

Cetuximab and panitumumab

In 1995, the first monoclonal antibody targeted to EGFR with convincing preclinical data was announced. Named cetuximab, it is a chimeric immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody that induces EGFR internalization and degradation once bound to the external domain of EGFR.77 Cetuximab showed great potential in progression-free survival (PFS) improvement in patients with low response to single-agent IRI therapy, according to the BOND trial, which contributed to the FDA approval of cetuximab for metastatic CRC in 2004.78 Moreover, a subsequent study also confirmed that cetuximab treatment prolonged OS and PFS in patients with CRCs when previous treatment with fluoropyrimidine, IRI and OX failed or was contraindicated.79 Combinations of cetuximab with other existing chemotherapies also displayed promising results. The phase III CRYSTAL trial found that cetuximab plus the FOLFIRI regimen had better progression control (8.9 vs. 8 months, hazard ratio (HR) 0.85; p = 0.048) than FOLFIRI alone, although the OS was not significantly different (HR, 0.93; p = 0.31).80 Interestingly, in different studies investigating cetuximab combined with FOLFOX in metastatic patients with CRC,81,82,83 no significant PFS or OS improvement was identified given that the doses in FOLFOX might have differed between studies because of the impact of the crossover design, but this lack of improvements in PFS and OS has also now been ascribed to CRC molecular heterogeneity.84 Maintaining cetuximab alone after a FOLFOX plus cetuximab regimen was not inferior to maintaining combination therapy in terms of PFS, with fewer adverse reactions noted.85 Escalating to the maximal dose of cetuximab based on the intensity of skin rash in the EVEREST trial suggested that an overall response might be achieved but without OS improvement.86

Murine-human chimeric antibodies might cause immunogenic reactions; therefore, the fully humanized antibody panitumumab has been developed, which does not trigger antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity like cetuximab does87 and showed a lower risk of hypersensitivity reactions (0.6–3.0% for panitumumab and 3.5–7.5% for cetuximab).88 The efficacy of panitumumab against CRC was evaluated in the PRIME trial when FOLFOX plus panitumumab was compared with FOLFOX alone, and the combination regimen achieved a better PFS (10 vs. 8.6 months, HR 0.80, p = 0.01) and OS than FOLFOX alone (23.9 vs. 19.7 months, HR = 0.88, p = 0.17), with further demonstrated significance in the updated survival analysis (HR = 0.83, p = 0.003) in patients with metastatic CRC.89,90

Maintenance with panitumumab and 5-FU/LV after panitumumab plus FOLFOX showed numerical improvement in PFS and OS compared with single-agent panitumumab in the retrospective analysis of the PRIME and PEAK trials.91 The toxicity of this combination did not increase, which was confirmed in the VALENTINO trial, in which maintaining single-agent panitumumab appeared to have shorter PFS (HR = 1.55, p = 0.011) than treatment with panitumumab combined with 5-FU/LV.92

Cetuximab and panitumumab are both FDA-approved agents for the first-line treatment of CRC. No inferiority or superiority was identified in the phase III ASPECCT study between these two drugs. Cetuximab resulted in an OS of 10.0 months, and the OS was 10.4 months for panitumumab (HR 0.97, p < 0.0007 for noninferiority), in which no obvious adverse events were noted other than the incidence of grade 3 or 4 hypomagnesemia (3% for cetuximab and 7% for panitumumab).93 This also indicated that antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity was not a major mechanism for these agents. However, in terms of quality-adjusted life-years, panitumumab seemed to be more economically efficient than cetuximab.93

For second-line treatment of CRC or beyond, anti-EGFR agents might be low priority because in several studies cetuximab and panitumumab have been demonstrated to fail to reach statistically better PFS or OS for patients with CRC.94,95,96 In fact, only one study97 reported that panitumumab significantly prolonged PFS (8 vs. 7.3 weeks, HR = 0.54, p < 0.001) compared with best supportive care in patients with chemorefractory CRC with an acceptable rate of adverse events. In general, anti-EGFR agents are among the least attractive choices in second-line treatment, especially compared with anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) agents, which will be discussed in a subsequent section.

Notably, subgroup analysis has indicated that both of these anti-EGFR agents are robustly beneficial to those patients with RAS-wild-type tumors in the CRYSTAL, PRIME, and TAILOR trials,80,90,98 even though negative outcomes were experienced in patients with RAS mutations (KRAS and NRAS exon 2, 3, and 4 mutations). Interestingly, left-sided CRC tends to be more enriched for EGFR expression than right-sided CRC, in which MSI or BRAF mutations are predominantly activated.99 This sidedness leads to different clinical outcomes, such that worse OS and PFS have been observed in right-sided CRC than in left-sided CRC regardless of the choice of chemotherapy regimen or targeted agent.100,101 This biological factor has also been validated in anti-EGFR agent trials: in terms of RR, PFS, and OS within RAS-wild-type patients, those with left-sided tumors were expected to have better clinical outcomes than those with right-sided cancers.80,90,98 As demonstrated above, BRAF mutations are independent from RAS mutations and are closely related to a low anti-EGFR response, and both the NCCN and ESMO guidelines recommend using cetuximab and panitumumab in confirmed BRAF-wild-type and RAS-wild-type patients.102

BRAF inhibitors

A higher incidence of mutated BRAF is found in melanoma than in CRC. The efficiency of BRAF inhibitors in BRAF-V600E-mutated melanoma prompted the development of a similar approach in CRC. A few studies investigated blocking BRAF or BRAF/MEK using vemurafenib or dabrafenib or using selective BRAF inhibitors and trametinib; however, a selective MEK inhibitor failed to improve the PFS or OS of patients with metastatic CRC, even though downstream MAPK activity was inhibited after drug administration. Some scholars have suggested that BRAF/MEK blockade might trigger feedback reactivation of EGFR, which would bypass activating MAPK via RAS.103,104,105 Preclinical research indicated that a combination of BRAF inhibitors and an upstream-pathway inhibitor might be superior to BRAF inhibition alone in terms of tumor growth control in BRAF-mutated CRC xenograft models.104,106,107 Subsequent studies focused on the combined use of BRAF inhibitors and EGFR inhibitors.108,109 Promising survival outcomes and response rates were observed in trials using vemurafenib combined with IRI and cetuximab for patients with BRAF-mutant CRC.110,111 In a phase II trial using encorafenib (a BRAF inhibitor) plus cetuximab, with or without alpelisib (ALP), the PFS and OS were improved compared with those seen in historical data.112 A triplet regimen consisting of dabrafenib, trametinib, and panitumumab achieved a better response rate than the doublet regimens (21% vs. 10% for dabrafenib + panitumumab or 0% for trametinib + panitumumab) in patients with BRAF-V600E-mutated CRCs.109 Similar results were reported for the ongoing BEACON trial, in which a triplet regimen of encorafenib, binimetinib (a MEK inhibitor), and cetuximab was well tolerated and exceeded previous efficacy outcomes for BRAF inhibitors.113 New evidence emerged suggesting that a triple regimen of encorafenib, binimetinib, and cetuximab offered significantly better survival benefit for patients with BRAF-mutated metastatic CRC than that achieved historically with a comparable rate of adverse events (OS: 9 vs. 5.4 months, HR = 0.52, p < 0.001; RR: 26% vs. 2%, p < 0.01).113 Second- or third-line regimens treating BRAF-V600E-mutated mCRC now may include anti-EGFR agents combined with vemurafenib + IRI or dabrafenib + trametinib or encorafenib + binimitinib, as recommended by the NCCN.

HER2 inhibitor

As discussed above, HER2 acts similarly to EGFR because it shares many downstream pathways, such as RAS/RAF/MEK and PI3K/AKT, and overexpression of HER provides one explanation for anti-EGFR resistance.114,115,116 Unlike the rate in breast cancer or gastric cancer, the rate of HER2 overexpression is relatively low (2–3%) and is independent of RAS or RAF mutation in patients with CRC.117,118,119 Preclinical studies revealed that HER2 amplification might compensate for EGFR blockade, and combined targeting of HER2 and EGFR inhibited tumor cell proliferation, producing an effect that was stronger than that achieved using either single agent alone.115,118,120 Several clinical trials have been developed to determine whether targeted agents against HER2-positive CRC (determined by immunohistochemistry (IHC), fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), or chromogenic in situ hybridization) can be as effective as those against breast cancer or gastric cancer. A few of these studies using a single HER2-targeted agent, with or without chemotherapy, were terminated early because of a low patient response rate or insignificant patient survival benefits.121,122 By contrast, dual-targeted HER2 therapy was found to be promising in preclinical research.118,123 In the phase II MyPathway trial, doublet treatment with trastuzumab, a classic HER2 inhibitor, and pertuzumab, a HER2 dimerization inhibitor, both of which are FDA approved in HER-positive breast cancer treatment, helped patients with HER2-amplified metastatic CRC to gain an overall response rate of 32%, a PFS of 2.9 months and an OS of 11.5 months, which may be even better in patients with RAS-wild-type CRCs (PFS: 5.3 months and OS: 14 months OS).124 Another dual anti-HER2 agent combination of trastuzumab and lapatinib (a TKI targeting both EGFR and HER2) against metastatic CRC was studied in the phase II HERACLES trial and reached an overall response rate of 30%, a PFS of 21 weeks and an OS of 46 weeks.125 In addition, this combination was capable of overcoming resistance to pertuzumab and trastuzumab doublet treatment.126 Given the low rate of HER2 overexpression and difficulties in identifying suitable dual-HER2 regimens, the HERACLES trial took great pains to find a potentially effective doublet regimen consisting of lapatinib;125 thus, targeting HER2 might act as a backup regimen for patients with RAS-wild-type HER2-positive CRC. Notably, left-sided colon tumors tend to overexpress HER2 more than those on the right side. Thus, anti-HER2 therapy might offer a new choice for anti-EGFR-resistant CRC.125

EGFR resistance

Accumulating evidence shows that even patients with RAS-wild-type CRC might not benefit from EGFR-targeted therapy, which suggests that identifying certain factors predicting low anti-EGFR therapy response and introducing other agents or strategies to overcome resistance would be beneficial. Some of these factors are innate or intrinsic, some are acquired after anti-EGFR treatment, and some may occur in both situations.

RAS mutations

RAS mutations are found in nearly half of patients with CRC, most of whom also harbor KRAS or NRAS mutations (36% for KRAS and 3% for NRAS).127 However, data showed that not all KRAS-mutated patients developed EGFR resistance: 85–90% of patients had mutations in KRAS codons 12 and 13 (exon 2), which largely indicate EGFR therapy resistance.128,129,130 For other sites, such as KRAS G13D, the connection with drug resistance is uncertain.131,132 Moreover, even patients with wild-type KRAS exon 2 might have other RAS mutations in sites such as KRAS exons 3 and 4 and NRAS exons 2, 3, and 4, which are related to negative benefits from cetuximab or panitumumab treatment.84,133

PI3K mutations and PTEN loss

PI3K (encoding phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate 3-kinase) mutations occur mostly in exons 9 and 20; mutations in exon 9 or exon 20 are found in 10–18% of patients with metastatic CRC and lead to constitutive activation of the downstream pathway to reverse EGFR-blocking effects in patients with CRC (response rate of 0% vs. 36.8% in mutated vs. nonmutated patients).134,135 PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog) is a suppressor in the PI3K/AKT pathway, the loss of which resulted in long-term tumor growth via activated PI3K/AKT and was found in 20–40% of patients with metastatic CRC.136 Theoretically, PTEN loss might be associated with EGFR blockade resistance; however, data from clinical studies remain contradictory.137,138 Given the low occurrence rate of these mutations in CRC, large trials are required for better confirmation.

EGFR alterations

Mutations in EGFR or low expression of EGFR or AREG (amphiregulin)/EREG (epiregulin), key ligands in the EGFR-specific autocrine loop, cause loss of target for anti-EGFR therapy, representing one of the major ways by which EGFR resistance develops in NSCLC and CRC. Although high EGFR levels might correlate slightly with stronger efficacy of anti-EGFR therapy, patients with low EGFR gene expression may benefit less from EGFR blockers than patients with high EGFR gene expression.139,140 Clinical studies also found that low AREG/EREG levels identified a low cetuximab response rate and vice versa.141,142 EGFR mutated sites vary, and the uncommon ones are linked to worse prognosis.136 For the common mutations, the T790M mutation is considered to be a primary alteration inducing EGFR TKI resistance, which is frequently observed in patients with NSCLC.143 For patients with CRCs, the EGFR S492R mutation in the extracellular domain of EGFR may be found in those receiving cetuximab and was responsible for their low drug response; however, they may still respond to panitumumab.144 New agents are being developed to maximize the affinity for mutated EGFR, such as Sym044145,146 and MM151,147 which might simultaneously target several different sites of the EGFR extracellular domain to overcome resistance to cetuximab or panitumumab, and both Sym044 and MM151 are in preclinical studies and clinical trials.

Compensative activation of alternative pathways, such as IGF-1R (insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor), JAK/STAT, c-MET, VEGF, and HER2, is responsible for acquired anti-EGFR resistance. Similar to EGFR, IGF-1R is bound by IGF1 or 2 and may activate RAS/RAF and PI3K/AKT signaling. Increased IGF-1R activation was noted in patients with CRC receiving cetuximab and was associated with a significantly lower response rate than that seen in patients without IGF-1R activation148 (22% vs. 65%, p = 0.002). This effect has also been observed in patients with breast cancer;149 thus, introducing an IGF-1R inhibitor combined with an EGFR blocker might be a practical solution. A phase III trial, combining the IGF-1R inhibitor dalotuzumab with cetuximab, showed numerically superior PFS and OS improvement in patients with CRC with IGF-1R-positive tumors,150 although preclinical studies did not support noticeable benefits from anti-IGF-1R treatment,151 which implied that more steps are needed for IGF-1R targeting. Persistent JAK/STAT activation might also be vital for EGFR-targeted resistance, although the increased level of STAT3 phosphorylation seen in in vivo and in vitro studies was related to gefitinib resistance, which could be overcome by silencing STAT3 in CRC cells.152,153

Bypass amplification and activation

c-MET and VEGF amplification and activation are discussed in the following parts of this review.

Another technique to develop novel anti-EGFR agents is to enclose conventional EGFR blockers within other agents such as nanoparticles, liposomes, and other protein-based drug delivery systems, which have shown promising tumor affinity and drug efficacy in several preclinical studies.154

The VEGF/VEFGR pathway

About the pathway

Angiogenesis, a physiological process by which new vessels form or reform from existing vessels, plays a vital role in tumor initiation, growth, and metastasis. Angiogenesis is also under complex regulation involving various proangiogenic and antiangiogenic factors, such as VEGF, fibroblast growth factors (FGFs), TGF-α, TGF-β, platelet-derived endothelial cell growth factor (PDGF), and angiopoietins produced from cancer or stromal cells.155,156,157 The relationship between neo-vessels and carcinogenesis remained theoretical until the identification of VEGF-A (also known as VEGF) and the production of its monoclonal antibody inhibitor, which finally demonstrated the tumor-promoting effect of angiogenesis.158 The VEGF family consists of five members (VEGF-A, -B, -C, and -D and placental growth factor (PIGF)), which may bind to endothelial cells via tyrosine kinase VEGF receptors. Vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFRs) are divided into three types, VEGFR-1, -2, and -3, along with the non-tyrosine kinase coreceptors neuropilin-1 (NP-1) and NP-2. The VEGF family may also interact with other proteins, such as integrins,157,159,160,161,162 to regulate angiogenesis, for example, by guiding the migration of endothelial cells.163 Among the complicated and diverse interactions between VEGF and VEGFR, VEGF-A, VEGF-B, and PIGF contribute predominantly to angiogenesis, while VEGF-C and VEGF-D tend to regulate lymphangiogenesis. VEGF-A and VEGF-B mainly bind to VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2, which are mostly expressed on vascular endothelial cells and on some nonendothelial cells.164 VEGFR-3 is bound by VEGF-C and VEGF-D with greatest affinity and is expressed on endothelial lymphatic cells.165

VEGFR-1 is a 180 kDa member of the receptor tyrosine kinase family expressed on many kinds of cells, including epithelial cells, inflammatory cells, and cancer cells. VEGFR-1 has high affinity for VEGF-1 and relatively low affinity for VEGF-2 and PIGF. Interestingly, VEGFR-1 seems to make little contribution to cell proliferation during vascular formation. Instead, it regulates cell differentiation and migration, especially for epithelial cells,163,166 and promotes differentiation of epithelial cells during early vascular construction.166 In addition, activation of VEGFR-1 under pathological conditions in inflammatory cells mediates the activation of several downstream pathways, such as PI3K/AKT/MAPK/ERK, leading to upregulation of inflammatory cytokine production (TNF-α and some interleukins (IL-1β, IL-6, and IL-8)) and inflammatory cell migration. The detailed function of VEGFR-1 is not fully understood; however, it is believed to be a regulatory factor in angiogenesis. VEGFR-1 favors VEGF-A over VEGFR-2, and the interaction of PIGF with VEGFR-1 might allow VEGF-A to bind to VEGFR-2. Therefore, VEGFR-1 works as a decoy regulator to control the amount of free VEGF-A available to activate VEGFR-2 when angiogenic effects appear to be mediated by VEGF-A/VEGFR-2.164,167,168

In contrast to VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2 is actively involved in vascular formation. It has a molecular mass of 200–230 kDa and is mostly expressed on blood and lymphatic epithelial cells.166 VEGFR-2 mainly interacts with VEGF-A, and activated VEGFR-2 leads to phosphorylation of tyrosine residues and activation of various pathways, including the PLCγ and RAS/RAF/ERK/MAPK pathways, by which epithelial cell growth is promoted, and the PI3K/AKT pathway, by which cell apoptosis may be avoided.156,157,161,163,166 Moreover, adhesion molecules such as cadherins and β-catenin, which are activated by the PI3K and MAPK pathways, may further interact with VEGFR-2, causing deterioration of intercellular junction stability and epithelial cell cytoskeleton reorganization, thus elevating vascular permeability. Vascular permeability is also enhanced by epithelial cell production of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) and nitric oxide (NO) via AKT protein kinase activation.169 The above observations indicate the proangiogenic effect of VEGFR-2 in physiological and pathological conditions. Activated VEGFR-2 contributes to the differentiation, proliferation, migration, and apoptosis resistance of epithelial cells, thereby increasing vascular tubulogenesis and permeability, which is very important for cancer angiogenesis and progression.

VEGFR-3, activated by VEGF-C and VEGF-D, contributes relatively independently to lymphatic vessel formation.170,171 Activated VEGFR-3 mediates the differentiation, migration, proliferation and survival of lymphatic endothelial cells by activating the RAS/MAPK/ERK pathway and the PI3K–AKT/PKB pathway.169,170,171 Although the VEGFR-3 expression level in tumor cells remains controversial, high levels of VEGF-C and VEGF-D have been observed in tumors with lymphatic metastasis, which is considered a potential explanation for cancer migration through lymphatic vessels.172

VEGF levels and VEGFR activity are elevated in patients with CRC and other cancers and are considered to be related to poor prognosis.173,174,175,176 Some tumor cells produce VEGF and express VEGFR, suggesting that VEGF works as both an autocrine factor and an endocrine factor in this situation. Increased VEGF levels were observed in very early stages of colorectal neoplasia, e.g., adenoma, and were even higher in later stages of cancer, especially in the metastatic stage.177,178 VEGF regulation is complex in CRC. Mutated K-RAS and p53, expression of COX-2, and hypoxia inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) induced by hypoxia from high tumor cell density might all contribute to VEGF-VEGFR activity alteration, resulting in cancer growth and migration.178,179,180,181 The proangiogenic effects of VEGF-VEGFR are important both in local sites supporting tumor progression and migration and in metastatic sites for neovascularization to support cancer survival and growth; therefore, anti-VEGF/VEGFR therapy might be developed to target both steps in tumor metastasis.

Targeting angiogenesis

Bevacizumab: the milestone

The landmark trials based on antiangiogenic therapy for CRC were initiated in 2004, comprising the phase II and III AVF2107 trials, which confirmed the superiority of chemotherapy (IRI, 5-FU, and leucovorin) plus bevacizumab over chemotherapy plus placebo.182 Bevacizumab is a humanized IgG monoclonal antibody targeted to VEGF-A that, according to the AVF2107 trial, improves both PFS and OS in metastatic CRC (RR: 44% vs. 34.8%; OS: 20.3 vs. 15.6 months; HR: 0.66, p < 0.001; PFS: 10.6 vs. 6.2 months; HR: 0.54; p < 0.001). Therefore, the FDA-approved bevacizumab as the first VEGF-targeted agent for metastatic CRC, even though several trials investigating bevacizumab plus monotherapy or FOLFOX/FOXFIRI showed only a partial significant improvement in either OS or PFS.182,183,184,185,186,187 Using bevacizumab may lead to 10% more grade 3–5 adverse events, such as hypertension or leukopenia,188 while it remained relatively safe and effective when treating elderly patients with CRC (age over 70 years old) in the phase III AVEX trial.185 Further investigation found that both patients with KRAS mutations and those with a wild-type genotype may benefit from bevacizumab.189,190,191 Both left- and right-sided colon tumors respond well to bevacizumab.191 Two independent trials stated no difference in terms of efficacy against metastatic CRC between FOLFOX and FOLFIRI combined with bevacizumab.192,193 Yet interestingly, a bevacizumab-containing regimen seemed to have better efficacy with the triplet FOLFOXIRI regimen than FOLFIRI alone (PFS: 12.3 vs. 9.7 months; HR: 0.77; p = 0.006; OS: 29.8 vs. 25.8 months; HR: 0.80; p = 0.03), although the latter doublet regimen had fewer adverse reactions according to the TRIBE trial.187

In addition to first-line application of bevacizumab, various trials have validated its efficacy in the second-line setting. Longer PFS (7.3 vs. 4.7 months, HR = 0.61, p < 0.001) and OS (12.9 vs. 10.8 months, HR = 0.75, p = 0.0011), as well as a better response rate (22.7% vs. 8.6%, p = 0.0001), were seen in the E3200 trial with a combination of FOLFOX and bevacizumab than with FOLFOX alone for patients with CRC who progressed after FOLFOX therapy.194 Similar numerical differences were also noted in the comparison with bevacizumab alone. Even so, continuation on bevacizumab for those who progressed after first-line chemotherapy was still helpful for PFS (5.7 vs. 4.1 months, HR = 0.68, p < 0.001) and OS (11.2 vs. 9.9 months, HR = 0.81, p = 0.0062) improvement compared with standard chemotherapy alone in the phase III ML18147 trial.195

In terms of maintenance, that is, bevacizumab after first-line chemotherapy in stable CRC, a series of trials demonstrated that anti-VEGF agents might be quite attractive. The prospective and observational BRiTE study indicated that bevacizumab continuation dramatically improved the OS of patients with CRC (31.8 vs. 19.9 months, HR = 0.48, p < 0.001) in comparison with no maintenance.196 Continuation of CAP and bevacizumab significantly prolonged the progression time in patients after first-line XELOX plus bevacizumab compared with observation (11.7 vs. 8.5 months, HR = 0.67, p < 0.0001)186 regardless of RAS/BRAF mutation status and mismatch repair (MMR) status.197

Trends of longer OS (23.2 vs. 20.0 months, HR = 1.05, p = 0.65 in the MACRO trial and 25.4 vs. 23.8 months, HR = 0.83, p = 0.2 in the SAKK (Swiss Group for Clinical Cancer Research) trial) have been observed for maintenance bevacizumab plus XELOX over bevacizumab alone in the MACRO trial198 and for maintaining single-agent bevacizumab therapy compared with no treatment in the SAKK trial.199 No inferiority has been found for maintenance of bevacizumab alone over bevacizumab plus 5-FU or continuation of bevacizumab plus CAP over bevacizumab plus XELOX.200,201

Emerging anti-VEGFR agents

Until now, only bevacizumab has been FDA approved as a first- and second-line VEGF-targeted agent for CRC, although various novel agents are emerging, and some of them have been approved for second-line treatment of CRC.

Aflibercept is a VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2 extracellular domain recombinant fusion protein that acts as a ligand trap targeting VEGF-A, VEGF-B, and PIGF. Aflibercept has a stronger affinity for VEGF-A than bevacizumab.202 The single-agent benefit of aflibercept seems to be limited,202 while chemo-combinations showed great potential according to the phase III VALOUR trial, in which the addition of aflibercept after OX or bevacizumab in metastatic CRC patients receiving FOXFIRI gained a better response (19.8% vs. 11.1%) as well as a longer PFS (6.9 vs. 4.7 months, HR = 0.76; p < 0.001) and OS (13.5 vs. 12.1 months, HR = 0.82; p = 0.0032) than FOXFIRI plus placebo.203 However, in terms of the first-line setting, as in the phase II AFFIRM trial, the combination of aflibercept with FOLFOX did not result in noticeable benefits in PFS or response rate, but did result in increased adverse event rates. Therefore, aflibercept should remain a second-line recommended CRC agent.204

Ramucirumab, a fully humanized monoclonal VEGFR-2-targeted IgG antibody, is another FDA-approved drug for second-line treatment of metastatic CRC based on the phase III RAISE trial. In this second-line-setting trial, a combination of ramucirumab and FOLFIRI significantly prolonged PFS (5.7 vs. 4.5 months; HR = 0.79, p < .0005) and OS (13.3 vs. 11.7 months, HR = 0.84, p = 0.022) compared with FOLFIRI-placebo.205 Similar to the findings with aflibercept, a phase II trial showed that the FOLFOX regimen may not benefit from addition to ramucirumab in terms of PFS.206

TKIs have become an appealing choice for patients with anti-EGFR-resistant NSCLC, while in patients with CRC, very few drugs have proven to be effective. Regorafenib, a TKI with multiple targets, such as VEGFR, PDGFR (platelet-derived growth factor receptor), FGFR (fibroblast growth factor receptor), and BRAF, was approved by the FDA to treat metastatic CRC. A first-line study concerning regorafenib plus FOLFOX in CRC found no improvement in the response rate compared with FOLFOX plus placebo.207 However, for refractory metastatic CRC treatment, in the phase III CORRECT trial,208 better median OS (6.4 vs. 5.0 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.0052) and PFS (1.9 vs. 1.7 months, HR = 0.49, p < 0.0001) were achieved using regorafenib than using placebo, which has also been validated in an Asian population in the CONCUR trial (PFS: 3.2 vs. 1.7 months, HR = 0.31, p < 0.0001; OS: 8.8 vs. 6.3 months, HR = 0.55, p = 0.0002).209

Other agents are being developed quickly. The phase III FRESCO trial supported fruquintinib, a TKI with the ability to block VEGFR-1, VEGFR-2, and VEGFR-3, as a recommended choice for chemotherapy against refractory metastatic CRC. In this Chinese-based study, OS (9.3 vs. 6.6 months, HR = 0.65, p < 0.001) and PFS (3.7 vs. 1.8 months, HR = 0.26, p < 0.001) were significantly prolonged with fruquintinib compared with placebo,210 which led to approval of by the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) also known as NMPA (National Medical Products Administration). Famitinib is another TKI targeting the c-KIT receptor, VEGFR-2, and VEGFR-3, PDGFR, and RET that is being investigated in an ongoing phase II study, which has so far shown an improved PFS (2.8 vs. 1.5 months, HR = 0.58, p = 0.0034) and disease control rate (57.58% vs. 30.91%, p = 0.0023) for Famitinib, with results concerning OS waiting to be reported.211

New TKIs expressing remarkable antitumor effects in preclinical studies have produced unsatisfying OS and RR values in recent reports; however, PFS may be prolonged by drugs such as the VEGFR-2- and FGFR-targeted brivanib212 and cediranib, a TKI targeted to all three VEGFRs and PDGFR that failed to present efficacy towards CRC control in the phase II and III HORIZON study,213,214 as did nintedanib, a TKI with the ability to block all VEGFRs, FGFR1-3, PDGFR-α, and PDGFR-β, according to the phase III LUME-Colon 1 trial.215 Other on-market TKIs, such as the gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST)-targeted imatinib and sunitinib and the squamous cell carcinoma-targeted erlotinib and gefitinib, have no indication or supporting data for treating CRC. The major agents for antiangiogenic therapy under clinical investigation in CRC are summarized in Tables 3 and 4.

Full size table

Full size table

Resistance to antiangiogenic therapy

Resistance to anti-VEGF has been observed in various cancer types, including CRC, which may be explained by compensatory activation of other signaling pathways and alternative excretion of angiogenesis-related proteins.

The fact that PIGF is upregulated and overexpressed in CRC cases that are resistant to antiangiogenic therapies216 suggests that PIGF is a crucial factor in overcoming anti-VEGF resistance, which might explain why aflibercept performed better than bevacizumab in xenograft models.217

The angiopoietin/TIE (tyrosine kinase with Ig-like and EGF-like domains) signaling RTK pathway contributes to vascular formation and stabilization by mediating downstream the RAS/RAF and PI3K/AKT pathways, which may be negatively regulated by angiopoietin-2. Abnormally increased levels of angiopoietin-2 have been noticed in a wide range of cancers, including CRC, and are associated with resistance to bevacizumab.218 Targeting both VEGF and angiopoietin-2 in preclinical studies helped control proliferation and progression in cancers that were resistant to VEGF-targeted therapies.219,220,221 The VEGF-A and angiopoietin-2 cotargeting agent vanucizumab, which inhibited growth in a CRC xenograft model,222 has passed through a phase I study with acceptable safety and encouraging anticancer effects.223

The FGF/FGFR pathway is important in both normal and cancer tissues for cell growth, survival, and migration. Upregulation of the FGF/FGFR pathway has also been observed in anti-VEGF-resistant cases.224,225,226 Dual blockade of FGF/FGFR and VEGF/VEGFR in preclinical studies displayed positive effects against tumor cells, while in clinical trials, agents such as nintedanib and the FGF-VEGF dual blocker dovitinib failed to benefit anti-VEGF-refractory patients.215,227

Compensatory activation of the c-MET pathway is the mechanism most related to the loss of anti-VEGF agent effectiveness.228 Single-agent c-MET inhibition might be helpful, as we shall discuss in the following section. However, CRC-based evidence for c-MET and VEGF dual targeting remains rare, and a study on NSCLC stated no better effect by combined blocking.229

A number of studies found factors such as a high level of TGF-β,230,231 upregulation of IL-1,231 downregulation of MIF (macrophage migration inhibitory factor),232 and overexpression of PDGFR233 in a wide range of VEGF-blockade-resistant cancers, implying possible connections to antiangiogenic therapeutic resistance; however, a lack of adequate data on silencing these factors in clinical cases has limited their further confirmation for CRC therapy.

Anti-EGFR or antiangiogenic therapies?

Both anti-EGFR and antiangiogenic therapies have demonstrated decent effects against metastatic CRC; however, which one is the preferred first-line choice for a more precise and personalized targeted agent strategy has been a matter of intense debate. The first head-to-head comparison study was the phase III FIRE-3 trial, which compared bevacizumab and cetuximab in a combined regimen with FOLFIRI. No obvious difference was discovered in the response rate or PFS for both arms, yet OS was prolonged in the cetuximab arm (28.7 vs. 25 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.017).189 Similar results were observed in a recent phase III trial investigating these two agents plus FOLFOX/FOLFIRI therapy, which reported few differences in the response rate, PFS, and OS between the two groups.191 The PEAK trial, focusing on panitumumab and bevacizumab with FOLFOX, stated that the response rate and PFS seemed alike, and a slightly longer OS for panitumumab than bevacizumab (34.2 vs. 24.3 months, HR = 0.77, p = 0.017) was noted.190 Further analysis in subgroups emphasized the importance of an individualized strategy. RAS mutation status might influence the efficacy of anti-EGFR therapy, but not that of anti-VEGF therapy; therefore, subgroup studies concerning gene information have been carried out. Cetuximab appeared to be the better choice for RAS-wild-type patients in the FIRE-3 post hoc analysis trial, given the increased rate of objective response (72.0% vs. 56.1%, p = 0.0029) and early tumor shrinkage (68.2% vs. 49.1%, p = 0.0005) that were achieved in the cetuximab arm in these patients.234 A recommendation that anti-EGFR over anti-VEGF is favored in RAS-wild-type patients has also been proposed via a meta-analysis that included the FIRE-3, CALGB, and PEAK trials.235 In addition, sidedness has been a critical factor that has marked impact on prognosis.236 Left-sided tumors responded more to cetuximab than to bevacizumab (38.3 vs. 28 months, HR = 0.63, p = 0.02), while those on the right side of the colon tended to behave oppositely (8.3 vs. 23 months, HR = 1.44, p = 0.28) in the FIRE-3 trial,

Источник: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41392-020-0116-z
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Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries

Abstract

Purpose

Cultural intermediaries define the standards many consumers use when evaluating cultural products. Yet, little research has focused on whether cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other with regard to the standards they emphasize. The purpose of this paper is to build on Bourdieu’s theory of cultural production to examine how the type of subfield reviewed and/or the cultural intermediary’s expertise (or “field-specific cultural capital”) affect the standards an intermediary uses.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper employed a computer-aided content analysis of the full corpus of “Rolling Stone” music album reviews (1967-2014).

Findings

Critics with lower field-specific cultural capital reflect the same logic as the subfield they are critiquing. Critics with higher field-specific cultural capital reflect the opposite logic.

Research limitations/implications

Bourdieu was ambivalent about whether cultural intermediaries will reflect the logic of a subfield. Results show that the answer depends on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. The results also reinforce previous findings that individuals with high field-specific cultural capital are more likely to break with the logic of a field.

Practical implications

Not all intermediaries are created equal. Producers and consumers who rely on cultural intermediaries should understand the intermediary’s critical analysis within the context of his/her experience.

Originality/value

This is one of the first studies to examine how a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital impacts his or her work. The findings are based on a large review sample and include reviewers’ analyses as they developed from having lower to higher field-specific cultural capital.

Keywords

Citation

Corciolani, M., Grayson, K. and Humphreys, A. (2020), "Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 54 No. 3, pp. 478-510. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Matteo Corciolani, Kent Grayson and Ashlee Humphreys.

License

Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode


1. Introduction

When determining the value of a product or service, consumers do not rely only on their personal judgment or on information about the producer. Consumers also frequently consult information from people who are experts in the product or service category. Scholars refer to these experts as “cultural intermediaries” – a term that includes theater critics (Shrum, 1991), advertising agencies (Gurrieri et al., 2016), bartenders (Ocejo, 2012), food marketers (Jamal, 2003), television programming buyers (Kuipers, 2012), fashion models (Lonergan et al., 2018), restaurant guides (Lane, 2019), personal trainers (Maguire, 2008), fundraisers (Banks, 2019), book publishers (Childress, 2012) and music critics (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005). Although these various professional roles differ from one another in many ways, they all serve the function of helping consumers understand and evaluate what a producer has created. As a result, success or failure in a market often depends on a cultural intermediary’s interpretation and influence (Humphreys and Carpenter, 2018; Shrum, 1991). Some producers therefore carefully consider the potential influence of cultural intermediaries when developing their products and services (Booth and Matic, 2011). But, what drives a cultural intermediary’s appraisals? Do intermediaries tend to apply standards that are similar to the standards used in the domains they are critiquing or do they apply different standards? This is not only an important practical question for companies and producers that rely on the cultural intermediaries’ evaluations but also an interesting theoretical question for those interested in theories of cultural production (Bourdieu,1971/1985, 1993).

This paper proposes that the answers to these questions depend on the level of experience (or “field-specific cultural capital”) a cultural intermediary has. The results of an automated text analysis of music album reviews from a major music magazine show that, when considering the authenticity of artists and their music, critics with low field-specific cultural capital use standards that are similar to the standards of the artists they are critiquing. In contrast, those with high field-specific cultural capital differentiate by applying different standards. These findings shed light on the status patterns that drive critics who, in turn, shape the cultural conversation that drives markets.

2. Theoretical framework: fields, cultural intermediaries and cultural capital

Throughout his career, sociologist Pierre Bourdieu (1969, 1971/1985, 1984, 1992/1995) developed and refined a unified framework for analyzing and understanding cultural products such as films, classical music and popular music. This paper uses Bourdieu’s framework as a lens for understanding and analyzing cultural intermediaries and for guiding the project’s key research questions. In Section 2.1, we review a central element of Bourdieu’s theoretical perspective – the concept of a field. In Section 2.2, we explain that, according to Bourdieu, fields tend to be divided into two subfields, each with different standards. One subfield focuses on popularity and economic success, whereas the other focuses on the status within the subfield. Section 2.3 reviews research on cultural intermediaries – people and organizations who mediate between those who produce cultural products and those who are the target audience for these products. Here we introduce our central research purpose, which is to examine whether cultural intermediaries mirror the standards of the subfield they are interpreting or follow a different logic.

In Section 2.4, we review Bourdieu’s concept of cultural capital and suggest that the answer to the question posed in Section 2.3 may depend on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Lastly, in Section 2.5 we explain how a cultural intermediary’s standards for a cultural product (and particularly the product’s authenticity) may depend on his or her field-specific cultural capital and the type of subfield whose cultural products the intermediary interprets.

2.1 Bourdieu’s concept of fields of cultural production

Bourdieu developed his framework for understanding and analyzing cultural products because he was dissatisfied with the two well-established approaches that critics tended to use at the time. One approach was to focus on a cultural product’s inherent characteristics, usually in comparison to similar works. Bourdieu thought that these “internal readings” of cultural products ignored the influential historical and social factors that affect the product’s creation (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 178). Another approach focused on the influence of social and historical factors, but Bourdieu felt that this “external mode of analysis” did not sufficiently consider the producer’s personal autonomy (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 180). Bourdieu therefore sought to develop an analytic perspective that simultaneously incorporated the influence of social/historical influences, personal factors and attributes of the work of art itself (Bourdieu,1986/1993).

Bourdieu’s solution was to introduce the concept of a “field” (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992). A field is a domain of activity in which people compete with each other for desirable resources. Examples of fields include fashion (Dolbec and Fischer, 2015), religion (McAlexander et al., 2014), advertising (Chávez, 2012), indie consumption (Arsel and Thompson, 2011) and commercial music (Anand and Peterson, 2000). When explaining the concept of a field, Bourdieu and those building on his work sometimes use the metaphor of a game: For instance, they describe those participating in the field as “players” trying to win competitively against each other and who must follow a set of “rules” to “win” the game, where winning means achieving key benefits such as status, material resources and/or social connections (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992; Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Drumwright and Kamal, 2016; Lonergan et al., 2018). Because different fields have different rules and are differentially likely to lead to particular benefits, each field will naturally attract different players – frequently those who are suitably qualified for competition in the field. Consequently, the players who compete in each field tend to have similar backgrounds (or “habitus”), similar goals (or “stakes”) and a common understanding of the rules of the game (or “doxa”). In Warren and Dinnie’s (2018, p. 303) words:

Fields are formed from networks of social relations; they are competitive environments in which social actors leverage their own habitus to compete for placement – for economic, cultural, social and symbolic power.

The concept of a field, which has been applied to many domains beyond cultural production, solves the analytic problems that Bourdieu identified with previous approaches to analyzing cultural products: A field simultaneously considers not only social and historical factors (because these factors strongly influence the field participants’ habitus and understanding of the field’s doxa) but also personal agency (because people are free to pursue their personal strategies within the doxa) and the characteristics of the works themselves (which are understood in relation to each other and in relation to habitus and doxa).

For example, in February 2019, the female pop singer, Arianna Grande, released a number-one song in the USA. called “Thank U Next.” According to Bourdieu, a full and accurate understanding of this song requires identifying the other players in the field in which Grande is competing, becoming acquainted with the backgrounds and upbringings of these players, characterizing the personal and professional relationships among them and specifying the positions each has taken in the field with their activities – a specification that requires comparing and contrasting the works of art that each player has produced (Bourdieu,1986/1993, pp. 183-184). This approach might reveal, for example, that “Thank U Next” was successful because:

  • It is musically similar to previous hit songs by Dua Lipa and Camilla Cabello (other players in the field).

  • The song references themes regarding the empowerment of women that are personally important to artists in this field (their backgrounds and upbringing).

  • It incorporates lyrics that are more specifically personal than the works by other artists in the field (the characteristics of the works themselves).

2.2 The subfields of cultural production: two logics, two sets of standards

Bourdieu proposed and observed that, as players compete in a field, they are likely to coalesce into two subfields (Hesmondhalgh, 2006), each of which operates according to its own logic (see Table I for a summary of these two subfields’ contrasting logics). An important difference between these two logics is the stakes that are most important to participants (Bourdieu,1971/1985). In the first subfield, participants care most about gaining status (symbolic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of restricted production or the avant-garde. In the second subfield, participants care most about gaining popularity (economic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of large-scale production. For example, in the field of cinema, cultural products from the subfield of large-scale production would include most blockbuster action films, whereas products from the subfield of restricted production would include art-house films, which, although earning critical acclaim, might be shown in only a few movie houses.

Bourdieu observed that a key motivation for those participating in the subfield of restricted production is to reject the logic of the subfield of large-scale production. Consequently, the tensions between the two subfields influence the activities in each. Fully understanding a cultural product therefore requires analyzing not only the players and cultural products produced within a particular subfield but also the players and products in corresponding subfields with different logics. For example, understanding Ariana Grande’s music requires not only comparing it with others in the same field of large-scale production but also with music by artists such as 12th Planet, whose work is categorized in the niche music genre of dubstep and follows the logic of restricted production. According to Bourdieu (1971/1985), aiming for either economic or symbolic capital encourages players in different subfields to focus on different audiences. On the one hand, those competing for popularity (and thus economic capital) care most about acceptance from the “public at large” (p. 17) – an audience comprised of consumers (not producers) of cultural products. Importantly, this audience needs to be sufficiently large so that, if its members choose a cultural product, the product’s creators and distributors can earn significant economic capital. On the other hand, those competing for status (and thus symbolic capital) care most about recognition from other producers in the subfield. Other producers in the subfield are much more familiar with the rules of the game than the consumers are and are themselves competing for status in the subfield. This audience is therefore most appropriate for determining the status of others in the subfield, but is also much narrower than the audience of consumers and potential consumers that the field of large-scale production targets. This explains why Bourdieu refers to this as the subfield of restricted production, and why players who win in this subfield generally cannot achieve the material resources those who win in the subfield of large-scale production earn.

To Bourdieu (1986/1993), the most important difference between the two types of subfields is the players’ autonomy when creating cultural products and influencing the field’s rules. Because the subfield of large-scale production is centrally concerned with eliciting positive reactions from a large audience of consumers, the players producing and disseminating cultural products must pay special attention to these consumers’ tastes and preferences or risk not gaining the stakes that are important to the field, namely, the “conquest of the largest possible market” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). The subfield of large-scale production is therefore more “heteronomous” – it is more influenced by the standards and expectations of those outside of the field of production. Consumer expectations for product features and genres are relatively well-established in the subfield of large-scale production, and producers who compete in these fields therefore achieve “success and the corresponding profits by adjusting to pre-existing demand” (Bourdieu, 1993, p. 82) – that is, pre-existing preferences and tastes.

In contrast, those competing in subfields of restricted production are more concerned with influencing others who are competing in the subfield. Therefore, the standards and expectations of those outside of the field are less relevant. Members of the general public are not only incapable of granting the kind of status these cultural producers seek but are also insufficiently informed about how to accurately judge cultural products produced in this subfield. Consequently, the producers in the subfields of restricted production are more “autonomous” – they are “freed from the censorship and auto-censorship consequent on direct confrontation with the public foreign to the profession” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). In fact, as Bourdieu (1969, p. 92) argues, those who compete in subfields of restricted production often enhance their status by emphasizing their “claim to independence” and their “indifference to the public.”

Although Bourdieu often discussed the subfields as if they are two separate and distinct types, he also recognized that the factors defining a subfield are continuous rather than binary. “Within a single universe,” he wrote:

[…] one always finds the entire range […] between works produced with reference to the restricted market on the one hand and works determined by a representation of the expectations of the widest possible public (Bourdieu,1971/1985, pp. 29-30).

Whether a subfield is heteronomous or autonomous is therefore more a question of degree than of kind. As Bourdieu observed, even authors who produce in fields of restricted production must consider how audiences outside of the field respond, partly because acceptance from these audiences is potentially problematic to those seeking status in the field of restricted production. “Even the author most indifferent to the lure of success and the least disposed to make concessions to the demands of the public,” Bourdieu (1969, p. 97) wrote, “is surely obliged to take account of the social truth of his work as it is reported back to him.”

This paper compares and contrasts the critical reception of musical products produced in relatively autonomous fields to the reception of products produced in relatively heteronomous fields. More specifically, this paper analyzes the music reviews by critics who write for Rolling Stone magazine, an outlet that focuses on popular and niche music genres. As stated, researchers in sociology and business have referred to such individuals as cultural intermediaries and the next section provides a brief review of this research.

2.3 Cultural intermediaries: definition and research summary

Bourdieu analyzed not only how social factors influence a cultural product’s production, but also how social factors influence its meaning and value after it has been produced. Bourdieu proposed that as part of their effort to understand and appreciate a cultural product and to integrate it into their lives, audiences create public “myths” about the creators and their works. These myths are descriptions of, and narratives about, the work, how it was created and what it symbolizes. These myths are influenced by not only what is happening in the artist’s subfield of cultural production but also what is happening in the fields in which the myth-makers and other audience members are competing. Bourdieu observed that certain professions focus on creating and promoting these public myths. An example that Bourdieu frequently discusses is the art critic, who tends to take responsibility for analyzing and explaining the fine arts, such as literature, painting and sculpture (Bourdieu, 1969, 1971/1985, 1992/1995). Bourdieu also argued that in a consumer marketplace that focuses increasingly on selling symbols and meaning, cultural products such as perfume and clothing – and even cleaning products and breakfast cereals – require their own public myths. Consequently, those producing these products require professionals to develop, translate and transmit these myths to the appropriate audiences – professionals who include, for example, advertising agency executives, property developers, tourism managers and market research experts (Bourdieu, 1969, 1984).

These observations, as well as similar observations by other authors and thinkers, have inspired researchers to develop a stream of research that focuses on cultural intermediaries (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Jamal, 2003; Lonergan et al., 2018; Shrum, 1991). A cultural intermediary is someone whose role is to mediate between the producer’s needs and the product’s consumer (Cronin, 2004, p. 350; Kobayashi et al., 2018; Wright, 2005). A prototypical cultural intermediary has two key qualities. First, his or her primary professional function is to explain or frame the value and significance of a symbolic good or service to particular consumers or other audiences (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Durrer and Miles, 2009; Komarova and Velthuis, 2018; Lane, 2019; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Ocejo, 2012; Shrum, 1991). Second, to serve this function, cultural intermediaries must have a level of knowledge and expertise that is greater – in the relevant areas – than that of their target audience (Durrer and Miles, 2009; Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Parker et al., 2018; Warren and Dinnie, 2018). In certain markets, structural or cultural factors have prevented formal cultural intermediaries from emerging, in which case producers must shoulder the responsibility for translating their work (Menon, 2019; Whitson et al., 2019). However, formal cultural intermediaries exist in a plethora of markets as diverse as biology, accounting and music (Negus, 2002).

What standards are likely to be most important when a cultural intermediary translates a product or work of art? Bourdieu was at best ambivalent in his response to this question. On the one hand, he sometimes suggested that critics strongly reflected the logic of the fields they analyzed. For example, he described how the critics of works produced by a subfield of restricted production place themselves “unconditionally at the service of the artist […]” and attempt “scrupulously to decipher his intentions, whereas excluding the public of non-producers from the entire business […]” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 18). Bourdieu also described how cultural intermediaries in subfields of large-scale production sometimes mirror their subfields’ logic (Kuipers, 2012; Maguire, 2008; Ocejo, 2012). These intermediaries “sell so well because they believe in what they sell […] [and are] predisposed to collaborate with total conviction” in the dissemination of the subfield’s values (Bourdieu, 1984, p. 365). On the other hand, Bourdieu sometimes suggested that critics are more likely to follow their personal logic rather than the logic of the field that produced a cultural product. For example, Bourdieu argues that the critical response to Flaubert’s “Sentimental Education” was due more to the fields in which the critics were working than to the novel’s attributes or the attributes of the field in which Flaubert was operating (Bourdieu,1992/1995, pp. 100-103). Bourdieu also sometimes referred to the artists’ and critics’ influence on each other as a system of circular causality (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 21, 1984, p. 99, 1992/1995, p. 289), whereby audiences always influence the producers to a certain extent and vice versa, and where no original cause can therefore be identified.

In light of Bourdieu’s ambivalence about cultural producers’ influence on cultural intermediaries, this research explores the question of whether or not intermediaries reflect the logic, and thus apply the standards, of the producers in the fields they analyze. More specifically, this research explores the proposition that cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other in their work because they operate within their personal fields and will therefore leverage their individual qualities to maximize their success in relation to other intermediaries (Chávez, 2012). In the next section, we identify field-specific cultural capital as a key difference that exists among cultural intermediaries in all fields and which, we argue, will significantly influence the intermediary’s work.

2.4 Field-specific cultural capital affects how a person competes in a subfield

A key factor that differentiates players in a field is their “field-specific,” “localized” or “field-dependent” cultural capital (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Kates, 2002; McAlexander et al., 2014; McQuarrie et al., 2012; Saatciojlu and Ozanne, 2013). All of these terms refer to resources that a player develops while learning about and competing within a particular field. These resources can include expertise and knowledge, social connections, material resources and/or prestige (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012). By definition, field-specific cultural capital is more helpful to players when they are competing in the field where the capital was developed than when competing in other fields (whereas field-independent or general cultural capital is helpful to players across multiple fields).

This paper analyzes how a cultural intermediary’s level of field-specific cultural capital influences his or her work. (We operationalize field-specific cultural capital in terms of experience – how long a person has been playing the role of cultural intermediary, and how much work the person has done in the field.) The influence of a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital has received some attention from researchers. For example, McQuarrie et al. (2012) show that, as cultural intermediaries in social media gain field-specific cultural capital, they need to renegotiate their relationship with consumers. Also Komarova and Velthuis (2018) show that a cultural intermediary’s success may depend more on the institutional context and economic resources available to the intermediary than on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Yet, no research to our knowledge has examined how an intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital may influence the standards that he or she applies to cultural works, and whether those standards are similar to or different from the standards of the people producing the cultural works.

Notably, a few studies have demonstrated that a consumer’s level of education and experience in a field – and, thus, his or her field-specific cultural capital – can influence the standards that he or she deems important when making consumption choices in the field. This previous research has suggested that those who have been competing in a field for a relatively short time tend to pursue stereotypic strategies that strongly reflect well-known assumptions about the standards in the subfield. In contrast, those who have been competing for a relatively long time tend to purposefully choose strategies that are more individualistic and which purposefully differ from the new participants’ strategies. For instance, Kates (2002, p. 390) notes that men who are relatively new to the homosexual community are more likely to rely on gay stereotypes to identify other gay men and guide their own behavior, whereas those who have been in the community for a while have a “more refined” approach, which often results in choices that violate the stereotype. As another example, Arsel and Thompson (2011) show that those who have been long-time players in the hipster field tend to make more individualistic choices and, therefore, tend to eschew choices that have become stereotypic of the field (and which those who are relatively new to the field are more likely to select).

These findings paint distinct pictures for those with less versus more field-specific cultural capital [although, see Beunza and Garud (2007) for an alternative perspective]. Those who are relatively new to a field first need to learn how to play according to the field’s rules, which often means making choices that raise as few doubts as possible about whether the player knows the rules and can competently follow them. In contrast, those with greater field-specific cultural capital are more likely to have the confidence, status and sophistication to veer away from standard and expected choices. They know how to play by the rules, but they enhance status by playing with the rules in a way that distinguishes themselves from those with less field-specific cultural capital. Based on these findings, we predict that the standards that cultural intermediaries with less field-specific cultural capital apply are more likely to reflect the logic of the field they are reviewing. In contrast, the standards that cultural intermediaries with more field-specific cultural capital apply are less likely to reflect the logic of the field they are reviewing. In fact, because those with more field-specific cultural capital seek to distinguish themselves from those with less, we predict that relatively high field-specific cultural capital can sometimes lead a cultural intermediary to follow a logic that is opposite to the field he or she is reviewing.

2.5 How field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy may affect a cultural intermediary’s perspective on authenticity

To investigate questions about how field-specific cultural capital (i.e. a cultural intermediary’s experience) might interact with field autonomy (i.e. whether a field is more heteronomous or autonomous), this paper focuses on how music critics discuss a cultural producer’s authenticity. Research has shown that consumers value authenticity (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Dhar, 2014; Rose and Wood, 2005) and that the authenticity concept can be generally defined in one of two ways. On one hand, authenticity can mean being true to one’s self. This paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s term, “moral authenticity,” to refer to this type of authenticity, which is also known as “self authenticity,” “expressive authenticity,” “indexical authenticity” or “existential authenticity” (Dutton, 2003; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016; Wang, 1999). On the other hand, authenticity can mean being true to a certain established type or genre. To refer to this kind of authenticity, this paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s (2009) “type authenticity,” which is also known as “iconic authenticity” or “categorical authenticity” (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016). This project focuses on authenticity because Bourdieu offers specific predictions about how the logic of restricted production and the logic of large-scale production are likely to demand different types of authenticity. This in turn allows us to predict what authenticity standards are likely to be most important to producers in each field, and to compare that prediction with the type of authenticity discussed by critics.

Academics define moral authenticity as not responding to standards and listening to your inner voice. In Holt’s (2002, p. 83) words, a product or brand is authentic if it is “perceived as invented and disseminated by parties without an instrumental economic agenda, by people who are intrinsically motivated by their inherent value.” A morally authentic producer is a producer who is “sincere, assumes responsibility for his/her actions and makes explicit value-based choices […] rather than accepting pre-programmed or socially imposed values and actions” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). According to Bourdieu, artists producing in the fields of restricted production prioritize moral authenticity. In these subfields:

[…] the true subject of the work of art is nothing other than the specifically artistic manner in which the artist grasps the world, those infallible signs of his mastery of his art (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20).

Subfields of restricted production therefore “exclude those artists suspected of submitting to external demands” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20). Artists in fields of restricted production ignore or purposefully violate established standards – an artistic decision that they expect, and even hope, will result in rejection from those who anticipate and prefer cultural products that adhere to standards:

[T]he structural gap between supply and demand [in the field of restricted production] contributes to the artists’ determination to steep themselves in the search for “originality” (with its concomitant ideology of the misunderstood genius) (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 22).

In contrast, Bourdieu expected subfields of large-scale production to produce works that adhere to standards and which therefore focus on type authenticity. These works rely on “immediately accessible technical processes and aesthetic effects, or the systematic exclusion of all potentially controversial themes or those liable to shock this or that section of the public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 28). As an example, Bourdieu mentions Westerns—films that “have to work within the very strict conventions of a heavily stereotyped genre” and which are:

[…] continually referring back to previous solutions – assumed to be known [by the audience] – in the solutions they provide to canonical problems, and they are continually bordering on pastiche or parody of previous authors, against whom they measure themselves (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 30).

Bourdieu (1971/1985, p. 30) also refers to works produced by subfields of large-scale production as being “characterized by tried and proven techniques and an oscillation between plagiarism and parody.” This is type authenticity or “a focus on whether the object meets the criteria for inclusion or membership in a type of genre or category,” and which “presupposes the existence of the […] type or genre, which is a culturally defined classification” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). As a result of this expectation for adherence to standards, expressions of self – especially those that purposefully ignore or violate standards – are not valued as highly in subfields of large-scale production:

Original experimentation entering the field of large-scale production almost always comes up against the breakdown in communication liable to arise from the use of codes inaccessible to the “mass public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 32).

Consequently, while the logic of large-scale production prioritizes adherence to standards, it makes little room for expression of self: Works produced for the field of large-scale production are “most often the culmination of transactions and compromises among various categories of agents,” who “use their specific competencies to guarantee a wide variety of cultural interests while simultaneously reactivating the self-censorship engendered by the vast industrial and bureaucratic organizations of cultural production” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 29).

Bourdieu’s predictions about the value of different kinds of authenticity in different subfields of cultural production have been supported in the context of popular music, which is this project’s context. For instance, Peterson’s (1997) work on authenticity in country music supports the idea that subfields of restricted production are more likely to validate expressions of self (i.e. moral authenticity), whereas subfields of large-scale production are more likely to validate adherence to standards (i.e. type authenticity). According to Peterson (1997), this progression is because of the fact that younger, smaller subfields are less likely to have standards that artists and audiences alike accept and institutionalize. Thus, artists producing works in younger subfields cannot rely on type authenticity as a basis for authenticity and can rely only on moral authenticity. In contrast, more established subfields have been market-tested through trial and error and have established the expectations that are required for success. Peterson (1997, p. 223) observes that, from the inception of country music in the early 1920s to its popularity in the late 1990s, what counted as authentic evolved in the music genre. At the genesis of country music, there was:

[…] no clear tradition […] with its own past, its own iconic progenitors, its own institutional delivery system, and its own self-conscious fan community. There was then no shared understanding of what constituted country music as a distinct genre.

However, after years of institutionalization and crystallization of genre expectations, “artists seeking to establish the bona fides of authenticity now have available a set of signifiers that had not been codified in 1953” (Peterson, 1997, p. 255). (Stavraki et al. (2018) offer a similar analysis of how consumers who are more familiar with well-known signifiers interpret art differently than those who are less familiar.)

To summarize, Bourdieu proposed that cultural production industries are likely to be divided into two general kinds of subfields. The first kind – subfields of restricted production – is more autonomous and, thus, more likely to value moral authenticity than type authenticity. The second kind – subfields of large-scale production – is more heteronomous and, thus, more likely to value type authenticity than moral authenticity. Building on our earlier discussion of field-specific cultural capital and standards (where those with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow a subfields standards), we therefore predict the following:

H1.

For more heteronomous fields, (a) type authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field specific cultural capital.

H2.

For more autonomous fields, (a) type authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital.

3. Data and methods

This project uses a quantitative, automated content analysis of critics’ music album reviews. Researchers generally use automated content (or textual) analysis to codify text into groups or categories based on selected criteria, aiming to convert the qualitative data into quantitative measures that can be statistically analyzed (Weber, 1990, p. 18). This approach allows researchers to make “replicable and valid inferences from texts (or other meaningful matter) to the contexts of their use” (Krippendorff, 1989, p. 18). We followed Humphreys and Wang’s (2017) recommended approach for analyses of this nature. According to these authors, automated content analysis must begin with the identification of a research question and, relatedly, the identification of constructs to be examined. Once a researcher has identified the research question and the related constructs, he or she should start collecting the data. Thereafter, the data has to be prepared, unitized and stored. The next step involves the operationalization of constructs, followed by the validation of the instruments adopted to measure them (e.g. dictionaries of keywords). Finally, the data has to be analyzed and interpreted, and the main constructs’ predictive validity must be tested. In the next sections, we describe how we followed these steps.

3.1 Research question and related constructs identification

Our hypotheses center on whether authenticity discussions are a function of reviewer field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy. Thus, for our textual analysis, authenticity was the focal construct and, more specifically, the two types of authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity), which have been a central focus in the literature on authenticity. We anticipate that two other constructs – a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital and the relative autonomy of the field in which the music was produced – will affect the extent to which type and/or moral authenticity is mentioned in a music review.

3.2 Data collection and data preparation

The full corpus of Rolling Stone album reviews is available on the magazine’s official website, and we therefore used Web Content Extractor to download 4,452 reviews. Rolling Stone is a useful source for this investigation because it provides not only a large review database for analysis but also, owing to its longevity, allows estimating a reviewer’s experience (i.e. his or her field-specific cultural capital) because many reviewers worked for the magazine for several years. Furthermore, because Rolling Stone focuses on popular and niche music genres, it facilitates comparing fields with different levels of autonomy (i.e. more heteronomous versus more autonomous fields). Rolling Stone is also an influential magazine (Frith, 1983) and its output is commonly analyzed in empirical analyses of the popular music market (McLeod, 2001). Also important, the full corpus of Rolling Stone reviews during this time period is available online, allowing a comprehensive analysis of the album reviews. These methods are therefore similar in spirit to Kristensen et al.’s (2019) analysis of the Mad Men TV series’ reviews.

We collected the following data for each review: the review’s text, the review’s date, the artist’s name, the album’s name and the reviewer’s name. The resulting dataset includes the entire population of reviews published from 1967 to 2014. A total of 421 reviewers wrote these reviews. Each of these reviewers published an average of 10.61 reviews and referred to a total of 1,404 artists, who each produced 3.17 music albums on average.

Next, we identified the genres for each album. Using the tags that Last.fm associates with each artist (e.g. American, blues-rock, hard-rock, heavy-metal) and Wikipedia’s “List of Popular Genres,” a research assistant identified one music genre for each album (See Table II for more detailed information). The research assistant collected all the tags that Last.fm associated with each artist and then picked a basic music genre, which could be consistently associated with the specific artist from Wikipedia’s list. For instance, Last.fm might list an artist as being associated with the genres of folk, singer-songwriter, Americana and folk-rock. In this case, Wikipedia classifies all four of these genres as part of the basic music genre, folk. However, in some cases, Last.fm associated artists with multiple music genres. For instance, an artist might be tagged as rock, hard-rock, blues-rock and blues. This artist could be associated with either rock or blues, which, according to Wikipedia, are two distinct music genres. In these cases, we followed Last.fm’s approach, which lists an artist’s most important or definitive tag first and the less definitive tags second. Hence, the artist imagined above would be considered a rock instead of a blues musician because rock was listed first. To test this classification approach’s reliability, a second coder manually coded a random sample of 150 artists (about 10 per cent of the total). The percent agreement between the two coders was 92.00 per cent.

After identifying and collecting the data, we spell-checked the text and created an MS Word macro to segment the reviews into 4,452 separate text files, which were stored on each of the co-authors’ personal computers.

3.3 Operationalization and dictionary validation

This research used a top-down approach to construct definition, which is common for computer-aided content analysis (Humphreys, 2010; Ludwig et al., 2013), and which uses theoretical constructs as a starting point for creating custom dictionaries to be used for textual analysis. This process began with a preliminary analysis of how Rolling Stone reviewers commonly reference type and moral authenticity – constructs identified in previous research as being important and informative. We identified a random sample of 450 reviews (about 10 per cent of the total), stratified by music genres and decades. The first author followed common qualitative procedures to analyze the reviews (Spiggle, 1994), which occupied 416 (double spaced) pages in total.

More specifically, using Atlas.Ti, the first author applied open, axial and theoretical coding procedures to the reviews (Corbin and Strauss, 1990). This analysis enabled us to identify two different variables associated with type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and two variables related to moral authenticity (i.e. personal authenticity and marketing language). Genre reference refers to words that indicate a particular type of music, such as jazz, blues or country. Relatedly, place reference refers to words that mention a particular location in association with the music – for example, Memphis which is often associated with blues, Jamaica which is often associated with reggae and ska and Detroit which is often associated with Motown. Words referencing genre and place are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist’s music lives up to expectations for a particular type of music genre. Personal authenticity refers to words mentioning an artist’s sincerity or honesty. Marketing language uses words that reference the opposite – a focus on producing music for profit, generating sales and selling out. Words referencing personal authenticity and marketing language are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist produces music from the heart or for monetary gain.

The dictionary validation stage was next (Humphreys and Wang, 2017). We refined the four dictionaries to minimize the likelihood of false negatives and false positives. First, to ensure that we captured as many of the various ways in which the key concepts could be discussed (and to avoid false negatives), we augmented the original dictionaries with potential synonyms, word stems and tenses (Humphreys and Wang, 2017), as well as additional keywords derived from the related literature on authenticity and popular music (Corciolani, 2014; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Holt, 2002; Newman and Smith, 2016; Peterson, 1997; Trilling, 1972). Adding these terms to the dictionary increased the likelihood that we would capture a construct when it was discussed. Second, certain words identified via this process had multiple connotations, including connoted meanings that were unrelated to our concepts of interest. Because these could lead to false positives, we tested the dictionaries on the texts and analyzed ten instances at a time to remove words with a high incidence of connoting concepts other than the ones we were interested in (Weber, 2005).

Furthermore, in accordance with Humphreys and Wang (2017), as well as Pennebaker et al. (2007), we asked three external judges to assess whether each proposed dictionary should include each keyword. For instance, should the “place reference” category include the word “Liverpool”? Should the “personal authenticity” category include the word “soulful”? Words remained in the dictionary if at least two coders agreed it should be kept; we removed words only if two judges thought that it should be removed (Humphreys, 2010). This process produced the dictionaries that are described in Table III and which we used for our subsequent analysis.

3.4 Analysis and interpretation

Next, we analyzed the relationships among our key variables. We used the Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC) software to obtain the frequency of words for each kind of authenticity – type and moral – as a percentage of total words in each review (the descriptive statistics are reported in Table IV). Following similar analyses by Genevsky and Knutson (2015), as well as Ludwig et al. (2013), we used ordinary least squares (OLS) regression to determine whether the interaction between field autonomy and reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital predicted the kind of authenticity discussed in the review.

To measure field autonomy, we counted the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone for a particular genre in a particular year (i.e. genre size). Given Rolling Stone’s importance as an arbiter of mainstream music (Frith, 1983), we can reasonably assume that the genres that reviewers analyze more frequently are more likely to reflect the logic of large-scale production, and the genres least frequently analyzed are more likely to reflect the logic of restricted production. We report the frequency of reviews per genre by decade in Table II.

We estimated the reviewers’ field-specific cultural capital by counting the number of reviews each reviewer wrote and published in Rolling Stone during a specific review’s calendar year (i.e. reviewer experience). As stated, the average number of reviews a reviewer wrote during the time period of our analysis was 10.61 (SD = 33.58), and the range of reviews a single reviewer wrote was 1-366. The average number of reviews in the top quartile was 35.85 (SD = 60.36). Both genre size and reviewer experience are two relative measures; that is, our investigation focuses on whether reviewers with more (versus less) experience treated bigger (versus smaller) music genres or more (versus less) autonomous fields similarly or differently. Because our measures of field-specific cultural capital (i.e. reviewer experience) and field autonomy (i.e. genre size) were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each.

Because Rolling Stone is not the only outlet where music critics can publish their reviews, it is possible that reviewers who wrote few reviews in Rolling Stone could have been contemporaneously writing extensively elsewhere. To the extent this was the case, the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone might poorly reflect a reviewer’s experience and field-specific cultural capital (for example, if a reviewer wrote extensively in other prominent magazines but not much in Rolling Stone). Therefore, to increase confidence in this measure, we tested the extent to which the reviewers in the Rolling Stone database published reviews in other outlets. We extracted a random sample of 45 Rolling Stone reviewers from our data set, which represents about 10 per cent of the total, stratified according to the number of published reviews. Then, we searched for each reviewer in both the Music Magazine Archive (https://mma-napubcoonline-com) and the Entertainment Industry Magazine Archive (Proquest) databases to count how many reviews each one authored during the same period in other outlets. We then assessed the correlation between the number of reviews written by each reviewer in Rolling Stone and their number of reviews in each of the other two databases. If reviewers publishing infrequently in Rolling Stone were publishing frequently in other outlets we would expect a negative correlation, raising concerns about whether publication frequency in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience. Our analysis of the entire sample did not show any significant correlations (rRS-MMA = –0.08, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = 0.04, p > 0.10). We also separately estimated the correlations for those who were above and below the median publication frequency in Rolling Stone for this sample. This additional analysis did not show a significant correlation for reviewers above the median (rRS-MMA = –0.01, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = –0.02, p > 0.10), but did show a marginally significant positive correlation for those below the median (rRS-MMA = 0.38, p = 0.06; rRS-EIA = 0.39, p = 0.06), suggesting that those writing infrequently in Rolling Stone were also writing infrequently for other outlets. Because this analysis did not produce any significant negative correlations, and did produce a marginally significant positive correlation for reviewers with a lower publication frequency, this increases confidence that number of reviews published in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience and field-specific cultural capital, especially given the prominence and prestige of Rolling Stone as an outlet for cultural intermediaries.

The regression analyses that we implemented for this research also included several covariates to account for otherwise unexplained variance in our models. Type of artist distinguished among male single artists (566; 40.31 per cent of the total), female single artists (178; 12.68 per cent), male bands (537; 38.25 per cent), female bands (12; 0.85 per cent) and other artists (e.g. male-female bands, various artists’ albums) (111; 7.90 per cent). We measured tags as the number of tags Last.fm associates with a reviewed artist (M = 3.10; SD = 1.15). We then calculated genre diversity as the percentage of music albums associated with more than the average number of tags in a particular music genre per year (M = 1.12; SD = 0.16). We measured artist experience as the number of albums an artist had released at the time of a specific review (M = 2.13; SD = 0.64). Because artist experience and genre diversity were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each. We measured these covariates, because we suspected that – unconnected to a subfield’s relative autonomy and a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital – authenticity issues might depend on the type of artist, the artist’s relative experience or the extent to which a genre was clearly or loosely defined. We also controlled for date, measured as the day on which a music album review was released, to account for any variance that might occur in a particular issue; for example, a holiday issue will probably contain more album reviews about boxed sets. Finally, we controlled for word count, i.e. the total number of words of each music album review (M = 375.30; SD = 347.28), and words per sentence (M = 24.15; SD = 5.50), assuming that longer sentences and reviews may be more – or less – likely to include certain kinds of analyses. (We also modeled the effect of artist experience [moderated by reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital] and the effect of genre diversity [moderated by genre size]. We discuss these effects at the end of the findings section.)

3.5 Validation

As Humphreys and Wang (2017) suggest, testing the main constructs’ predictive validity helps to increase confidence that a study’s constructs are measured appropriately, and that the analytic methods are appropriate for capturing construct relationships. One approach that Humphreys and Wang (2017) recommend is a triangulation analysis, which tests the relationship between a study’s key constructs and other constructs that may not be central to the study, but which may be expected to be related to a study’s constructs in accordance with construct definitions or previous theory (Humphreys, 2010; Pennebaker and King, 1999). To the extent that these expected correlations emerge, confidence in the construct validity is enhanced.

Consequently, we ran an analysis to check whether our main dependent variables correlated with the other related constructs. Regarding type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference), we correlated our two variables with the affiliation dictionary developed and validated by Pennebaker et al. (2007). This dictionary was created to capture a person’s fundamental need to feel part of a social group, as defined by McClelland (1987). Because judgments about type authenticity are also about deciding whether something is part of a group, we anticipated a degree of convergence between the two concepts. For example, a few of the keywords included in the affiliation dictionary are “associates,” “belong” and “tradition.” As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between affiliation and genre reference (r = 0.02; p < 0.05) and between affiliation and place reference (r = 0.10; p < 0.001).

Regarding moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity), we correlated our two variables with the dictionary developed and validated by Opoku et al. (2006). This dictionary, which is based on Aaker’s (1997) five traits of brand personality, measures, among other things, a brand’s level of sincerity. Opoku et al. (2006, p. 31) refer to sincerity as reflecting an entity’s “true […] nature”, so we expected that this dictionary would correlate with our measures of moral authenticity. As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and personal authenticity (r = 0.05; p < 0.001) and a negative and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and marketing language (r = –0.04; p < 0.01).

4. Results

Using the PROCESS macro for SPSS (Model 1, Hayes, 2013), we estimated four models to test whether the interaction effects between reviewer experience (i.e. field-specific cultural capital) and genre size (i.e. field autonomy), predicted genre reference, place reference, marketing language and personal authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity). The results of the four OLS regressions (see Table V) show that three of the four hypothesized interactions are statistically significant, whereas one is marginally significant. The interaction between reviewer experience and genre size as a predictor of genre reference is negative and marginally significant (ß = –0.005; t = –1.915, p < 0.10), whereas that of place reference is negative and statistically significant (ß = –0.022; t = –2.950, p < 0.01). In contrast, the interaction effect of reviewer experience and genre size on marketing language is significantly positive (ß = 0.009; t = 2.209, p < 0.05), as is that of personal authenticity (ß = 0.013; t = 2.787, p < 0.01).

Figure 1 graphically illustrates the interactions and plots the conditional effects of reviewer experience at various levels of genre size for each dependent variable. We also summarize the results in Figure 2. If reviewers follow the logic of the field that produced a cultural product, we would expect that reviewers of music produced by smaller (i.e. more autonomous) fields would focus less on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and more on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). We would also expect that reviewers of music produced by larger (i.e. more heteronomous) fields would focus more on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and less on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). Our hypotheses predict that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are likely to follow this pattern but that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are likely to do the opposite.

We plot our results in Figure 1. In each of the plots for this figure, the frequency of referencing the relevant language is indicated by the y-axis, and reviewer experience is indicated by the x-axis. Within each plot, lines of different styles (solid, dashed, etc.) represent different genre sizes (i.e. different levels of field autonomy). Because our hypotheses predict differences between reviewers with different experience (i.e. different levels of field-specific cultural capital), moderated by genre size (field autonomy/heteronomy), support for our hypotheses would be indicated by different slopes for the lines in the plots.

The general pattern of results shown in Figure 1 supports our hypotheses. First, consider the effects when genre size was large (high heteronomy). To do this, focus on the small-dashed lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the largest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that, for these heteronomous genres, type authenticity will be more important and moral authenticity will be less important. We hypothesized that less-experienced reviewers are more likely than more-experienced reviewers to reflect these standards. We would therefore expect a downward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language) and an upward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language). The small-dashed lines are indeed downward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are upward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

Now consider the effects when genre size was small (high autonomy). To do this, focus on the solid lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the smallest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that type authenticity will be less important for autonomous genres and moral authenticity will be more important. Given our hypotheses, we would expect an upward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language) and a downward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language). The solid lines are indeed upward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are downward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

While the visual pattern of data in Figure 1 suggests general support for our hypotheses, we performed statistical tests on each model by using the Johnson–Neyman technique (Hayes and Matthes, 2009; Johnson and Neyman, 1936), which calculates the range of the moderator in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically different from zero. This technique is also called a floodlight analysis (Spiller et al., 2013). The points of transition identified through this method distinguish areas, if any, in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically distinct (Hayes and Rockwood, 2017).

Our hypotheses were supported for all the associated tests for this analysis, except in the case of genre reference language when genres were smaller. For this dependent variable [Figure 3(a)], there is only one significant Johnson–Neyman region, which corresponds to a genre size > 8.308. This means that, for more heteronomous fields (genre size > 8.308), reviewer experience has a statistically significant and negative effect on genre reference. That is, as predicted by H1a, when the genre size was big, this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital. However, H2a was not supported for this dependent variable. When genre size was smaller (genre size < 8.308), reviewer experience had no effect on the likelihood of mentioning this type-authenticity variable (See the gray regions in Figure 3). (See the Appendix for the complete table of conditional effects of reviewer experience on the dependent variables at different values of genre size.)

For place reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(b)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.502), this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1a. For more autonomous fields (genre size < 4.435), this type-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2a.

PROCESS also identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions for marketing language, which is a measure of moral authenticity [see Figure 3(c)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.601), reviewer experience has a positive and statistically significant effect on marketing language. When discussing music produced by more heteronomous fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. More autonomous fields (genre size < 1.372) exhibited the opposite tendency. In these fields, this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

For personal authenticity (also a measure of moral authenticity), PROCESS again identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(d)]. More heteronomous fields exhibited a positive, significant effect of reviewer experience on personal authenticity (genre size > 5.241). That is, in these fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. In contrast, in more autonomous fields (genre size < 1.386), this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

While many of this study’s hypotheses were supported by the data, we tested two sets of hypotheses that were only partially supported, and where our interpretation of the results is therefore more speculative. The first set of hypotheses centered on the effect of genre diversity. We anticipated that the likelihood of discussing different types of authenticity would be affected by genre diversity, moderated by genre size. We believed that, when a genre has higher internal diversity, widely agreed-upon stereotypic elements would be less likely, making it more difficult for a reviewer to discuss type authenticity (Mattsson et al., 2010). We therefore expected that more-diverse genres would, relative to less-diverse genres, focus less on type authenticity and more on moral authenticity. We further expected that this tendency would be stronger in larger genres, where the logic of large-scale production and its emphasis on type authenticity would be more disrupted by genre diversity.

Our analysis showed that the genre diversity × genre size interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (genre reference and marketing language), and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. An investigation of this interaction showed that, as predicted, the authenticity language used in reviews of music from small (autonomous) genres was unaffected by genre diversity, but that the authenticity language used in reviews of music from large (heteronomous) genres was affected (Figure 4). However, while we had anticipated that diversity would decrease focus on type authenticity and increase focus on moral authenticity, our results indicate a decreased focus on both. Reviews of music from more-diverse genres were, relative to reviews of music from less-diverse genres, less likely to mention genre (type authenticity) and less likely to mention marketing language (moral authenticity).

Details of this analysis are depicted in Figure 4. For genre reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified one Johnson–Neyman significance region (Figure 4[c]). This means that, for a genre size higher than 1.391 (see the gray regions in Figure 4), an increase in genre diversity led reviewers to mention significantly less genre references. Similarly, for marketing language (a measure of moral authenticity), one Johnson–Neyman region was identified, corresponding to genre size > 5.134 [Figure 4(d)]. Thus, for larger genres, genre diversity had a negative and statistically significant effect on marketing language. The result for genre reference supports our intuition that the co-existence of different types in more diverse genres makes it less productive or more challenging to discuss authenticity relative to a particular type. However, the result for marketing language does not support our expectation that, when type authenticity is less important, discussions of moral authenticity naturally rise. In fact, it supports the opposite. Although moral authenticity is already relatively unimportant in larger genres, it could be that – to the extent it is important – it is linked to type authenticity. For example, while success in a field of large-scale production such as country music hinges primarily on being authentic to type, it may be additionally helpful if the artist is also perceived to be personally authentic to the type. A musician who follows the standards of bluegrass music may be considered to be high in type authenticity, but his or her authenticity may be enhanced if the musician grew up in a part of the country known for bluegrass and is therefore also playing music that is morally authentic to him or her. However, our results suggest that greater diversity in a field of large-scale production (for example, greater diversity in what counts as traditional bluegrass music) may make it more difficult for reviewers to discuss this version of moral authenticity.

A second set of hypotheses centered on artist experience. Given Marshall’s (2006) observation about the importance of artists establishing a personal connection with their fans (even in fields of large-scale production), we anticipated that, as an artist’s career develops, he or she would increasingly focus on moral authenticity, regardless of whether he or she works in a field of restricted or large-scale production. We also reasoned that it is harder for an artist to build moral authenticity after only one music album and easier to build it over time. Because the central hypothesis for our work is that less experienced reviewers are more likely to assess artists on the artists’ terms (and that more experienced reviewers are less likely to do this), we hypothesized that less experienced reviewers would focus more on moral authenticity when reviewing experienced artists and more on type authenticity when reviewing less experienced artists.

Our analysis showed that the artist experience × reviewer experience interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (place reference and personal authenticity) and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. Looking at a plot of the results, the general pattern supports our hypotheses for these two dependent variables. Consider the solid line in Figure 5(a) and 5(b), which represent the least experienced artists in our data set. This line slopes downward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference (a measure of type authenticity) and slopes upward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity (a measure of moral authenticity). The short-dashed lines in Figure 5(a) and 5(b) represent the most experienced artists in our data set. As expected, this line slopes upward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference and downward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity. So, as expected, less experienced reviewers are more likely than more experienced reviewers to mention type authenticity for less experienced artists and moral authenticity for more experienced artists.

Figure 5 also shows that, for place reference, PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 5(c)]. The first region falls below an artist experience equal to 1.632, whereas the second region corresponds to an artist experience higher than 2.549 (See the gray regions in Figure 5). This result shows that, for less experienced artists (artist experience < 1.632), reviewers with less experience discussed place references significantly more than reviewers with more experience (i.e. reviewer experience negatively affects place reference). In contrast, for more experienced artists (artist experience > 2.549), reviewers with more experience paid more attention to place reference than less experienced reviewers (i.e. reviewer experience positively affects place reference). However, for personal authenticity, only one Johnson-Neyman region was identified, corresponding to artist experience < 2.173 [Figure 5(d)]. For less expert artists, reviewer experience had a statistically significant and positive effect on personal authenticity. These tests provide partial support for the idea that, as an artist’s career progresses, a reviewer with less experience is more likely to focus on moral authenticity whereas a reviewer with more experience is more likely to focus on type authenticity. And, at a more general level, the patterns reinforce the idea that reviewers with more experience are systematically different from reviewers with less experience.

5. Discussion and implications

Cultural intermediaries explain to target audiences how a cultural product should be understood and evaluated, and therefore play an important role in shaping the reception of these products. However, the nature of an intermediary’s influence depends on the standards that he or she uses when interpreting a cultural product. It is therefore important to understand the factors that influence the selection of these standards. This research tests whether Rolling Stone music critics mirror the authenticity standards that are important to musical artists, or whether they apply different standards. This question is theoretically important because Bourdieu was ambivalent about the answer. In certain writings, Bourdieu suggests that cultural intermediaries try to adhere to the standards that are important to the creator, whereas in others he observes that cultural intermediaries operate according to their personal logic, even if that logic is separate and distinct from the artist’s logic. Our results suggest that both of Bourdieu’s observations are true, depending on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Figure 2 summarizes our results.

More specifically, the pattern of effects indicates that reviewers with less experience (and thus lower field-specific cultural capital) are more likely to apply the authenticity standards that Bourdieu predicts are important to artists in a particular subfield. For instance, when reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with less experience are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity. Furthermore, when reviewing music produced by larger, more heteronomous subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. However, the pattern is opposite for reviewers with more experience. These reviewers show a tendency to apply authenticity standards that differ from the standards that Bourdieu predicted are important to artists in the subfield. When reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with more experience are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. Moreover, when reviewing music produced by larger (more heteronomous) subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity.

While Bourdieu did not specifically propose that field-specific cultural capital might be the key to unlock his ambivalence about cultural intermediaries, past research on field-specific cultural capital helps explain this result. Fields are social spaces where members compete for status and, as we explained earlier, research has suggested that those with less field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow expectations, whereas those with more field-specific cultural capital are more likely to distinguish themselves by deviating from expectations. Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that reviewers with less experience would mirror the standards that are important to the artists, whereas those with more experience might focus on the opposite. Although some work has recognized that cultural intermediaries may differ from each other with regard to their stance toward the artist and the consumer (Kuipers, 2012) and that they may adjust their standards when the logic of a field changes (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005), this research is the first to identify a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital as a factor that systematically produces differences among cultural intermediaries.

This paper focuses on comparing the standards reflected in the appraisals of cultural intermediaries with the standards of the artists being reviewed. However, an important area for future research, which this paper does not address, is the potential influence of the standards that are important to consumers. Figure 6 illustrates a theoretical space that simultaneously considers the standards held by artists and by consumers, and thus indicates four general positions that a cultural intermediary can take. As the table indicates, a cultural intermediary can take a stance that is – or is not – in line with the artist’s standards and which is – or is not – in line with consumer standards. Given the cultural intermediary’s role as a translator, one might expect them to always adopt standards similar to those of consumers, but research has identified circumstances in which a cultural intermediary’s standards differ from those of consumers (Chávez, 2012; Coulter et al., 2003; Gurrieri et al., 2016; Wright, 2005).

Our research compared the rows in Figure 6, namely, reviewers who apply standards that are either the same as, or different from, the artist. We found that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the first row of the table (applying the same standards as the artist), whereas those with higher field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the second row of the table (applying different standards). Based on previous research, we have proposed that reviewers with more field-specific cultural capital situate themselves in the second row because they are motivated primarily by a desire to differentiate themselves from reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital, who are situated in the first row. It could be that – like the Flaubert reviewers characterized by Bourdieu – these reviewers are applying their own internal standards, without regard for the standards held by typical consumers of the product or by typical readers of the review. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 4 of Figure 6. To the extent that more experienced reviewers exhibit these tendencies, this might suggest that a cultural producer should pay less attention to (and, if possible, try to navigate away from) cultural intermediaries with significant experience as intermediaries. This is because such intermediaries are speaking primarily to an internal audience of other intermediaries, and not to stakeholder groups that are important to the cultural producer.

However, it could be that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are more attuned to consumer standards than those with lower field-specific cultural capital, and that their differentiation from these less-experienced reviewers is because of a desire and ability to better connect with certain target consumers. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 3 of Table VII. While many cultural producers would bristle in response to reviewers who apply standards that differ from the standards they were considering when they produced their works, some may nonetheless appreciate the benefit of being effectively interpreted for a particular audience. Consider a musician from Cuba who seeks to succeed in the field of restricted production by combining the genre of her home country (salsa) with the genre of her youth (rap). As an artist focusing on the avant-garde, she views her music as being a unique and morally authentic expression of her true self, and is more concerned about what other musicians think of her work than what the general public thinks. This musician may not mind (and may even appreciate) a review that evaluates her music negatively with regard to type authenticity because she knows that her audience eschews type authenticity. This musician may alternatively appreciate a review that evaluates her music positively with regard to type authenticity, especially if the positive review is targeted to customers who care about that standard and therefore results in popularity and sales. Niche artists who become more popular often struggle with concerns about selling out (Corciolani, 2014), but the benefit of greater financial reward is sometimes worth the cost.

A further important step for future research is to examine whether a similar pattern of results can be found among other cultural intermediaries, particularly those in domains other than music. The results of our research support the premise that those who are new to a field tend to follow stereotypic or expected patterns, whereas those who are more expert to a field tend to deviate. A similar dynamic might be expected in fields such as the restaurant market, the cinema market, and the tourism market. However, some research (Beunza and Garud, 2007) has suggested that those who are new to a field may tend to be more iconoclastic instead of more stereotypic. This is not what we found in our research context, but it seems likely that fields differ on this dimension. Therefore, it may be informative to identify fields in which there is a higher expectation that newcomers will exhibit either the one or the other behavior, and to assess the potential impact on the content of cultural intermediaries’ reviews. Another area for future research is to explore how other differences between cultural intermediaries might predict the standards they apply. For example, remembering that Bourdieu’s framework was specifically designed to accommodate how a player’s personal idiosyncrasies might influence how he or she plays the game, future research might examine how personality differences between cultural intermediaries might encourage those with the same field-specific cultural capital to use different strategies and, thus, apply different standards.

Finally, reviews now exist ubiquitously on online platforms such as Amazon, Yelp!, and Hotels.com, in addition to a number of social shopping and technology sites and blogs. Some reviewers even gain status to become known as experts or thought leaders (McQuarrie et al., 2012). Do the dynamics of field-specific cultural capital operate similarly in these very different contexts, where reviewers exist outside of the sanctioned mass media field of magazines? In a world where both writing and reading reviews is common and influential, understanding the ways in which reviewer standards change the nature of the field promises to shed light on the ways in which consumers and producers interpret and enjoy not just artistic products, but perhaps more mundane products such as consumer electronics, cleaning products and building supplies.

Figures

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

Figure 1.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

Opens in a new window.

Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

Figure 2.

Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

Opens in a new window.

Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 3.

Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 4.

Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 5.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Источник: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095/full/html

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Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries

Abstract

Purpose

Cultural intermediaries define the standards many consumers use when evaluating cultural products. Yet, little research has focused on whether cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other with regard to the standards they emphasize. The purpose of this paper is to build on Bourdieu’s theory of cultural production to examine how the type of subfield reviewed and/or the cultural intermediary’s expertise (or “field-specific cultural capital”) affect the standards an intermediary uses.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper employed a computer-aided content analysis of the full corpus of “Rolling Stone” music album reviews (1967-2014).

Findings

Critics with lower field-specific cultural capital reflect the same logic as the subfield they are critiquing. Critics with higher field-specific cultural capital reflect the opposite logic.

Research limitations/implications

Bourdieu was ambivalent about whether cultural intermediaries will reflect the logic of a subfield. Results show that the answer depends on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. The results also reinforce previous findings that individuals with high field-specific cultural capital are more likely to break with the logic of a field.

Practical implications

Not all intermediaries are created equal. Producers and consumers who rely on cultural intermediaries should understand the intermediary’s critical analysis within the context of his/her experience.

Originality/value

This is one of the first studies to examine how a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital impacts his or her work. The findings are based on a large review sample and include reviewers’ analyses as they developed from having lower to higher field-specific cultural capital.

Keywords

Citation

Corciolani, M., Grayson, K. and Humphreys, A. (2020), "Do more experienced critics review differently? : How field-specific cultural capital influences the judgments of cultural intermediaries", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 54 No. 3, pp. 478-510. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Matteo Corciolani, Kent Grayson and Ashlee Humphreys.

License

Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode


1. Introduction

When determining the value of a product or service, consumers do not rely only on their personal judgment or on information about the producer. Consumers also frequently consult information from people who are experts in the product or service category. Scholars refer to these experts as “cultural intermediaries” – a term that includes theater critics (Shrum, 1991), advertising agencies (Gurrieri et al., 2016), bartenders (Ocejo, 2012), food marketers (Jamal, 2003), television programming buyers (Kuipers, 2012), fashion models (Lonergan et al., 2018), restaurant guides (Lane, 2019), personal trainers (Maguire, 2008), fundraisers (Banks, 2019), book publishers (Childress, 2012) and music critics (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005). Although these various professional roles differ from one another in many ways, they all serve the function of helping consumers understand and evaluate what a producer has created. As a result, success or failure in a market often depends on a cultural intermediary’s interpretation and influence (Humphreys and Carpenter, 2018; Shrum, 1991). Some producers therefore carefully consider the potential influence of cultural intermediaries when developing their products and services (Booth and Matic, 2011). But, what drives a cultural intermediary’s appraisals? Do intermediaries tend to apply standards that are similar to the standards used in the domains they are critiquing or do they apply different standards? This is not only an important practical question for companies and producers that rely on the cultural intermediaries’ evaluations but also an interesting theoretical question for those interested in theories of cultural production (Bourdieu,1971/1985, 1993).

This paper proposes that the answers to these questions depend on the level of experience (or “field-specific cultural capital”) a cultural intermediary has. The results of an automated text analysis of music album reviews from a major music magazine show that, when considering the authenticity of artists and their music, critics with low field-specific cultural capital use standards that are similar to the standards of the artists they are critiquing. In contrast, those with high field-specific cultural capital differentiate by applying different standards. These findings shed light on the status patterns that drive critics who, in turn, shape the cultural conversation that drives markets.

2. Theoretical framework: fields, cultural intermediaries and cultural capital

Throughout his career, sociologist Pierre Bourdieu (1969, 1971/1985, 1984, 1992/1995) developed and refined a unified framework for analyzing and understanding cultural products such as films, classical music and popular music. This paper uses Bourdieu’s framework as a lens for understanding and analyzing cultural intermediaries and for guiding the project’s key research questions. In Section 2.1, we review a central element of Bourdieu’s theoretical perspective – the concept of a field. In Section 2.2, we explain that, according to Bourdieu, fields Air Cluster 1.3.0 Free Download with Crack to be divided into two subfields, each with different standards. One subfield focuses on popularity and economic success, whereas the other focuses on the status within the subfield. Section 2.3 reviews research on cultural intermediaries – people and organizations who mediate between those who produce cultural products and those who are the target audience for these products. Here we introduce our central research purpose, which is to examine whether cultural intermediaries mirror the standards of the subfield they are interpreting or follow a different logic.

In Section 2.4, we review Bourdieu’s concept of cultural capital and suggest that the answer to the question posed in Section 2.3 may depend on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Lastly, in Section 2.5 we explain how a cultural intermediary’s standards for a cultural product (and particularly the product’s authenticity) may depend dr fone activation code and email his or her field-specific cultural capital and the type of subfield whose cultural products the intermediary interprets.

2.1 Bourdieu’s concept of fields of cultural production

Bourdieu developed his framework for understanding and analyzing cultural products because he was dissatisfied with the two well-established approaches that critics tended to use at the time. One approach was to focus on a cultural product’s inherent characteristics, usually in comparison to similar works. Bourdieu thought that these “internal readings” of cultural products ignored the influential historical and social factors that affect the product’s creation (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 178). Another approach focused on the influence of social and historical factors, but Bourdieu felt that this “external mode of analysis” did not sufficiently consider the producer’s personal autonomy (Bourdieu,1986/1993, p. 180). Bourdieu therefore sought to develop an analytic perspective that simultaneously incorporated the influence of social/historical influences, personal factors and attributes abaqus software with crack free download the work of art itself (Bourdieu,1986/1993).

Bourdieu’s solution was to introduce the concept of a “field” (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992). A field is a domain of activity in which people compete with each other for desirable resources. Examples of fields include fashion (Dolbec and Fischer, 2015), religion (McAlexander et al., 2014), advertising (Chávez, 2012), indie consumption (Arsel and Thompson, 2011) and commercial music (Anand and Peterson, 2000). When explaining the concept of a field, Bourdieu and those building on his work sometimes use the metaphor of a game: For instance, they describe those participating in the field as “players” trying to win competitively against each other and who must follow a set of “rules” to “win” the game, where winning means achieving key benefits such as status, material resources and/or social connections (Bourdieu and Waquant, 1992; Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Drumwright and Kamal, 2016; Lonergan et al., 2018). Because different fields have different rules and are differentially likely to lead to particular benefits, each field will naturally attract different players – frequently those who are suitably qualified for competition in the field. Consequently, the players who compete in each field tend to have similar backgrounds (or “habitus”), similar goals (or “stakes”) and a common understanding of the rules of the game (or “doxa”). In Warren and Dinnie’s (2018, p. 303) words:

Fields are formed from networks of social relations; they are competitive environments in which social actors leverage their own habitus to compete avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U placement – for economic, cultural, social and symbolic power.

The concept of a field, which has been applied to many domains beyond cultural production, solves the analytic problems that Bourdieu identified with previous approaches to analyzing cultural products: A field simultaneously considers not only social and historical factors (because these factors strongly influence the field participants’ habitus and understanding of the field’s doxa) but also personal agency (because people are free to pursue their personal strategies within the doxa) and the characteristics of the works themselves (which are understood in relation to each other and in relation to habitus and doxa).

For example, in February 2019, the female pop singer, Arianna Grande, released a number-one song in the USA. called “Thank U Next.” According to Bourdieu, a full and accurate understanding of this song requires identifying the other players in the field in which Grande is competing, becoming acquainted with the backgrounds and upbringings of these players, characterizing the personal and professional relationships among them and specifying the positions each has taken in the field with their activities Aiseesoft 4K Converter Free Activate a specification that requires comparing and contrasting the works of art that each player has produced (Bourdieu,1986/1993, pp. 183-184). This approach might reveal, for example, that “Thank U Next” was successful because:

  • It is musically similar to previous hit songs by Dua Lipa and Camilla Cabello (other players in the field).

  • The song references themes regarding the empowerment of women that are personally important to artists in this field (their backgrounds and upbringing).

  • It incorporates lyrics that are more specifically personal than the works by other artists in the field (the characteristics of the works themselves).

2.2 The subfields of cultural production: two logics, two sets of standards

Bourdieu proposed and observed that, as players compete in a field, they are likely to coalesce into two subfields (Hesmondhalgh, 2006), each of which operates according to its own logic (see Table I for a summary of these two subfields’ contrasting logics). An important difference between these two logics is the stakes that are most important to participants (Bourdieu,1971/1985). In the first subfield, participants care most about gaining status (symbolic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of restricted production or the avant-garde. In the second subfield, participants care most about gaining popularity (economic capital). Bourdieu referred to this subfield as the field of large-scale production. For example, in the field of cinema, cultural products from the subfield of large-scale production would include most blockbuster action films, whereas products from the subfield of restricted production would include art-house films, which, although earning critical acclaim, might be shown in only a few movie houses.

Bourdieu observed that a key motivation for those participating in the subfield of restricted production is to reject the logic of the subfield of large-scale production. Consequently, the tensions between the two subfields influence the activities in each. Fully understanding a cultural product therefore requires analyzing not only the players and cultural products produced within a particular subfield but also the players and products in corresponding subfields with different logics. For example, understanding Ariana Grande’s music requires not only comparing it with others in the same field of large-scale production but also with music by artists such as 12th Planet, whose work is categorized in the niche music genre of dubstep and follows the logic of restricted production. According to Bourdieu (1971/1985), aiming for either economic or symbolic capital encourages players in different subfields to focus on different audiences. On the one hand, those competing for popularity (and thus economic capital) care most about acceptance from the “public at large” (p. 17) – an audience comprised of consumers (not producers) of cultural products. Importantly, this audience needs to be sufficiently large so that, if its members choose a cultural product, the product’s creators and distributors can earn significant economic capital. On the other hand, those competing for status (and thus symbolic capital) care most about recognition from other producers in the subfield. Other producers in the subfield are much more familiar with the rules of the game than the consumers are and are themselves competing for status in the subfield. This audience is therefore most appropriate for determining the status of others in the subfield, but is also much narrower than the audience of consumers and potential consumers that the field of large-scale production targets. This explains why Bourdieu refers to this as the subfield of restricted production, and why players who win in this subfield generally cannot achieve the material resources those who win in the subfield of large-scale production earn.

To Bourdieu (1986/1993), the most important difference between the two types of subfields is the players’ autonomy when creating cultural products and influencing the field’s rules. Because the subfield of large-scale production is centrally concerned with eliciting positive reactions from a large audience of consumers, the players producing and disseminating cultural products must pay special attention to these consumers’ tastes and preferences or risk not gaining the stakes that are important to the field, namely, the “conquest of the largest possible market” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). The subfield of large-scale production is therefore more “heteronomous” – it is more influenced by the standards and expectations of those outside of the field of production. Consumer expectations for product features and genres are relatively well-established in the subfield of large-scale production, and producers who compete in these fields therefore achieve “success and the corresponding profits by adjusting to pre-existing demand” (Bourdieu, 1993, p. 82) – that is, pre-existing preferences and tastes.

In contrast, those competing in subfields of restricted production are more concerned with influencing others who are competing in the subfield. Therefore, the standards and expectations of those outside of the field are less relevant. Members of the general public are not only incapable of granting the kind of status these cultural producers seek but are also insufficiently informed about how to accurately judge cultural products produced in this subfield. Consequently, the producers in the subfields of restricted production are more “autonomous” – they are “freed from the censorship and auto-censorship consequent on direct confrontation with the public foreign to the profession” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 17). In fact, as Bourdieu (1969, p. 92) argues, those who compete in subfields of restricted production often enhance their status by emphasizing their “claim to independence” and their “indifference to the avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U Bourdieu often discussed the subfields as if they are two separate and distinct types, he also recognized that the factors defining a subfield are continuous rather than binary. “Within a single universe,” he wrote:

[…] one always finds the entire range […] between works produced with reference to the restricted market on the one hand and works determined by a representation of the expectations of the widest possible public (Bourdieu,1971/1985, pp. 29-30).

Whether a subfield is heteronomous or autonomous is therefore more a question of degree than of kind. As Bourdieu observed, even authors who produce in fields of restricted production must consider how audiences outside of the field respond, partly because acceptance from these audiences is potentially problematic to those seeking status in the field of restricted production. “Even the author most indifferent to the lure of success and the least disposed to make concessions to the demands of the public,” Bourdieu (1969, p. 97) wrote, “is surely obliged to take account of the social truth of his work as it is reported back to him.”

This paper compares and contrasts the critical reception of musical products produced in relatively autonomous fields to the reception of products produced in relatively heteronomous fields. More specifically, this paper analyzes the music reviews by critics who write for Rolling Stone magazine, an outlet that focuses on popular and niche music genres. As stated, researchers in sociology and business have referred to such individuals as cultural intermediaries and the next section provides a brief review of this research.

2.3 Cultural intermediaries: definition and research summary

Bourdieu analyzed not only how social factors influence a cultural product’s production, but also how social factors influence its meaning and value after it has been produced. Bourdieu proposed that as part of their effort to understand and appreciate a cultural product and to integrate it into their lives, audiences create public “myths” about the creators and their works. These myths are descriptions of, and narratives about, the work, how it was created and what it symbolizes. These myths are influenced by not only what is happening in the artist’s subfield of cultural production but also what is happening in the fields in which the myth-makers and other audience members are competing. Bourdieu observed that certain professions focus on creating and promoting these public myths. An example that Bourdieu frequently discusses is the art critic, who tends to take responsibility for analyzing and explaining the fine arts, such as literature, painting and sculpture (Bourdieu, 1969, 1971/1985, 1992/1995). Bourdieu also argued that in a consumer marketplace that focuses increasingly on selling symbols and meaning, cultural products such as perfume and clothing – and even cleaning products and breakfast cereals – require their own public myths. Consequently, those producing these products require professionals to develop, translate and transmit these myths to the appropriate audiences – professionals who include, for example, advertising agency executives, property developers, tourism managers and market research experts (Bourdieu, 1969, 1984).

These observations, as well as similar observations by other authors and thinkers, have inspired researchers to develop a stream of research that focuses on cultural intermediaries (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Jamal, 2003; Lonergan et al., 2018; Shrum, 1991). A cultural intermediary is someone whose role is to mediate between the producer’s needs and the product’s consumer (Cronin, 2004, p. 350; Kobayashi et al., 2018; Wright, 2005). A prototypical cultural intermediary has two key qualities. First, his or her primary professional function is to explain or frame the value and significance of a symbolic good or service to particular consumers or other audiences (Adkins, 2011; Coulter et al., 2003; Durrer and Miles, 2009; Komarova and Velthuis, 2018; Lane, 2019; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Ocejo, 2012; Shrum, 1991). Second, to serve this function, cultural intermediaries must have a level of knowledge and expertise that is greater – in the relevant areas – than that of their target audience (Durrer and Miles, 2009; Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005; Lonergan et al., 2018; Maguire and Matthews, 2012; Parker et al., 2018; Warren and Dinnie, 2018). In certain markets, structural or cultural factors have prevented formal cultural intermediaries from emerging, in which case producers must shoulder the responsibility for translating their work (Menon, 2019; Whitson et al., 2019). However, formal cultural intermediaries exist in a plethora of markets as diverse as biology, accounting and music (Negus, 2002).

What standards are likely to be most important when a cultural intermediary translates a product or work of art? Bourdieu was at best ambivalent in his response to this question. On the one hand, he sometimes suggested that critics strongly reflected the logic of the fields they analyzed. For example, he described how the critics of works produced by a subfield of restricted production place themselves “unconditionally at the service of the artist […]” and attempt “scrupulously to decipher his intentions, whereas excluding the public of non-producers from the entire business […]” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 18). Bourdieu also described how cultural intermediaries in subfields of large-scale production sometimes mirror their subfields’ logic (Kuipers, 2012; Maguire, 2008; Ocejo, 2012). These buy avg antivirus - Crack Key For U “sell so well because they believe in what they sell […] [and are] predisposed to collaborate with total conviction” in the dissemination of the subfield’s values (Bourdieu, 1984, p. 365). On the other hand, Bourdieu sometimes suggested that critics are more likely to follow their personal logic rather than the logic of the field that produced a cultural product. For example, Bourdieu argues that the critical response to Flaubert’s “Sentimental Education” was due more to the fields in which the critics were working than to the novel’s attributes or the attributes of the field in which Flaubert was operating (Bourdieu,1992/1995, pp. 100-103). Bourdieu also sometimes referred to the artists’ and critics’ influence on each other as a system of circular causality (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 21, 1984, p. 99, 1992/1995, p. 289), whereby audiences always influence the producers to a certain extent and vice versa, and where no original cause can therefore be identified.

In light of Bourdieu’s ambivalence about cultural producers’ influence on cultural intermediaries, this research explores the question of whether or not intermediaries reflect the logic, and thus apply the standards, of the producers in the fields they analyze. More specifically, this research explores the proposition that cultural intermediaries may systematically differ from each other in their work because they operate within their personal fields and will therefore leverage their individual qualities to maximize their success in relation to other intermediaries (Chávez, 2012). In the next section, we identify field-specific cultural capital as a key difference that exists among cultural intermediaries in all fields and which, we Saola Animate 3.0.1 Crack + Keygen Key 2021 - Free Activators, will significantly influence the intermediary’s work.

2.4 Field-specific cultural capital affects how a person competes in a subfield

A key factor that differentiates players in a field is their “field-specific,” “localized” or “field-dependent” cultural capital (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012; Kates, 2002; McAlexander et al., 2014; McQuarrie et al., 2012; Saatciojlu and Ozanne, 2013). All of these terms refer to resources that a player develops while learning about and competing within a particular field. These resources can include expertise and knowledge, social connections, material resources and/or prestige (Cosckuner-Balli and Thompson, 2012). By definition, field-specific cultural capital is more helpful to players when they are competing in the field where the capital was developed than when competing in other fields (whereas field-independent or general cultural capital is helpful to players across multiple fields).

This paper analyzes how a cultural intermediary’s level of field-specific cultural capital influences his or her work. (We operationalize field-specific cultural capital in terms of experience – how long a person has been playing the role of cultural intermediary, and how much work the person has done in the field.) The influence of a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital has received some attention from researchers. For example, McQuarrie et al. (2012) show that, as cultural intermediaries in social media gain field-specific cultural capital, they need to renegotiate their relationship with consumers. Also Komarova and Velthuis (2018) show that a cultural intermediary’s success may depend more on the institutional context and economic resources available to the intermediary than on the intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Yet, no research to our knowledge has examined how an intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital may influence the standards that he or she applies to cultural works, and whether those standards are similar to or different from the standards of the people producing the cultural works.

Notably, a few studies have demonstrated that a consumer’s level of education and experience in a field – and, thus, his or her field-specific cultural capital – can influence the standards that he or she deems important when making consumption choices in the field. This previous research has suggested that those who have been competing in a field for a relatively short time tend to pursue stereotypic strategies that strongly reflect well-known assumptions about the standards in the subfield. In contrast, those who have been competing for a relatively long time tend to purposefully choose strategies that are more individualistic and which purposefully differ from the new participants’ strategies. For instance, Kates (2002, p. 390) notes that men who are relatively new to the homosexual community are more likely to rely on gay stereotypes to identify other gay men and guide their own behavior, whereas those who have been in the community for a while have a “more refined” approach, which often results in choices that violate the stereotype. As another example, Arsel and Thompson (2011) show that those who have been long-time players in the hipster field tend to make more individualistic choices and, therefore, tend to eschew choices that have become stereotypic of the field (and which those who are relatively new to the field are more likely to select).

These findings paint distinct pictures for those with less versus more field-specific cultural capital [although, see Beunza and Garud (2007) for an alternative perspective]. Those who are relatively new to a field first need to learn how to play according to the field’s rules, which often means making choices that raise as few doubts as possible about whether the player knows the rules and can competently follow them. In contrast, those with greater field-specific cultural capital are more likely to have the confidence, status and sophistication to veer away from standard and expected choices. They know how to play by the rules, but they enhance status by playing with the rules in a way that distinguishes themselves from those with less field-specific cultural capital. Based on these findings, we predict that the standards that cultural intermediaries with less field-specific cultural capital apply are more likely to reflect the logic Download adguard the field they are reviewing. In contrast, the standards that cultural intermediaries with more field-specific cultural capital apply are less likely to reflect the logic of the field they are reviewing. In avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U, because those with more field-specific cultural capital seek to distinguish themselves from those with less, we predict that relatively high field-specific cultural capital can sometimes lead a cultural intermediary to follow a logic that is opposite to the field he or she is reviewing.

2.5 How field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy may affect a cultural intermediary’s perspective on authenticity

To investigate questions about how field-specific cultural capital (i.e. a cultural intermediary’s experience) might interact with field autonomy (i.e. whether a field is more heteronomous or autonomous), this paper focuses on how music critics discuss a cultural producer’s authenticity. Research has shown that consumers value authenticity (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Dhar, 2014; Rose and Wood, 2005) and that the authenticity concept can be generally defined in one of two ways. On one hand, authenticity can mean being true to one’s self. This paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s term, “moral authenticity,” to refer to this type of authenticity, which is also known as “self authenticity,” “expressive authenticity,” “indexical authenticity” or “existential authenticity” (Dutton, 2003; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016; Wang, 1999). On the other hand, authenticity can mean being true to a certain established type or genre. To refer to this kind of authenticity, this paper uses Carroll and Wheaton’s (2009) “type authenticity,” which is also known as “iconic authenticity” or “categorical authenticity” (Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Newman and Smith, 2016). This project focuses on authenticity because Bourdieu offers specific predictions about how the logic of restricted production and the logic of large-scale production are likely to demand different types of authenticity. This in turn allows us to predict what authenticity standards are likely to be most important to producers in each field, and to compare that prediction with the type of authenticity discussed by critics.

Academics define moral authenticity as not responding to standards and listening to your inner voice. In Holt’s (2002, p. 83) words, a product or brand is authentic if it is “perceived as invented and disseminated by parties without an instrumental economic agenda, by people who are intrinsically motivated by their inherent value.” A morally authentic producer is a producer who is “sincere, assumes responsibility for his/her actions and makes explicit value-based choices […] rather than accepting pre-programmed or socially imposed values and actions” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). According to Bourdieu, artists producing in the fields of restricted production prioritize moral authenticity. In these subfields:

[…] the true subject of the work of art is nothing other than the specifically artistic manner in which the artist grasps the world, those infallible signs of his mastery of his art (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20).

Subfields of restricted production therefore “exclude those artists suspected of submitting to external demands” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 20). Artists in fields of restricted production ignore or purposefully violate established standards – an artistic decision that they expect, and even hope, will result in rejection from those who anticipate and prefer cultural products that adhere to standards:

[T]he structural gap between supply and demand [in the field of restricted production] contributes to the artists’ determination to steep themselves in the search for “originality” (with its concomitant ideology of the misunderstood genius) (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 22).

In contrast, Bourdieu expected subfields of large-scale production to produce works that adhere to standards and which therefore focus on type authenticity. These works rely on “immediately accessible technical processes and aesthetic effects, or the systematic exclusion of all potentially controversial themes or those liable to shock this or that section of the public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 28). As an example, Bourdieu mentions Westerns—films that “have to work within the very strict conventions of a heavily stereotyped genre” and which are:

[…] continually referring back to previous solutions – assumed to be known [by the audience] – in the solutions they provide to canonical problems, and they are continually bordering on pastiche or parody of previous authors, against whom they measure themselves (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 30).

Bourdieu (1971/1985, p. 30) also refers to works produced by subfields of large-scale production as being “characterized by tried and proven techniques and an oscillation between plagiarism and parody.” This is type authenticity or “a focus on whether the object meets the criteria for inclusion or membership in a type of genre or category,” and which “presupposes the existence of the […] type or genre, which is a culturally defined classification” (Carroll and Wheaton, 2009, p. 261). As a result of this expectation for adherence to standards, expressions of self – especially those that purposefully ignore or violate standards – are not valued as highly in subfields of large-scale production:

Original experimentation entering the field of large-scale production almost always comes up against the breakdown in communication liable to arise from the use of codes inaccessible to the “mass public” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 32).

Consequently, while the logic of large-scale production prioritizes adherence to standards, it makes little room for expression of self: Works produced for the field of large-scale production are “most often the culmination of transactions and compromises among various categories of agents,” who “use their specific competencies to guarantee a wide variety of cultural interests while simultaneously reactivating the self-censorship engendered by the vast industrial and bureaucratic organizations of cultural production” (Bourdieu,1971/1985, p. 29).

Bourdieu’s predictions about the value of different kinds of authenticity in different subfields of cultural production have been supported in the context of popular music, which is this project’s context. For instance, Peterson’s (1997) work on authenticity in country music supports the idea that subfields of restricted production are more likely to validate expressions of self (i.e. moral authenticity), whereas subfields of large-scale production are more likely to validate adherence to standards (i.e. type authenticity). According to Peterson (1997), this progression is because of the fact that younger, smaller subfields are less likely to have standards that artists and audiences alike accept and institutionalize. Thus, artists producing works in younger subfields cannot rely on type authenticity as a basis for authenticity and can rely only on moral authenticity. In contrast, more established subfields have been market-tested through trial and error and have established the expectations that are required for success. Peterson (1997, p. 223) observes that, from the inception of country music in the early 1920s to its popularity in the late 1990s, what counted as authentic evolved in the music genre. At the genesis of country music, there was:

[…] no clear tradition […] with its own past, its own iconic progenitors, its own institutional delivery system, and its own self-conscious fan community. There was then no shared understanding of what constituted country music as a distinct genre.

However, after years of institutionalization and crystallization of genre expectations, “artists seeking to establish the bona fides of authenticity now have available a set of signifiers that had not been codified in 1953” (Peterson, 1997, p. 255). (Stavraki et al. (2018) offer a similar analysis of how consumers who are more familiar with well-known signifiers interpret art differently than those who are less familiar.)

To summarize, Bourdieu proposed that cultural production industries are likely to be divided into two general kinds of subfields. The first kind – subfields of restricted production – is more autonomous and, thus, more likely to value moral authenticity than type authenticity. The second kind – subfields of large-scale production – is more heteronomous and, thus, more likely to value type authenticity than moral authenticity. Building on our earlier discussion of field-specific cultural capital and standards (where those with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow a subfields standards), we therefore predict the following:

H1.

For more heteronomous fields, (a) type authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field specific cultural capital.

H2.

For more autonomous fields, (a) type authenticity is less likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital and (b) moral authenticity is more likely to be discussed by cultural intermediaries with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital.

3. Data and methods

This project uses a quantitative, automated content analysis of critics’ music album reviews. Researchers generally use automated content (or textual) analysis to codify text into groups or categories based on selected criteria, aiming to convert the qualitative data into quantitative measures that can be statistically analyzed (Weber, 1990, p. 18). This approach allows researchers to make “replicable and valid inferences from texts (or other meaningful matter) to the contexts of their use” (Krippendorff, 1989, p. 18). We followed Humphreys and Wang’s (2017) recommended approach for analyses of this nature. According to these authors, automated content analysis must begin with the identification of a research question and, relatedly, the identification of constructs to be examined. Once a researcher has identified the research question and the related constructs, he or she should start collecting the data. Thereafter, the data has to be prepared, unitized and stored. The next step involves the operationalization of constructs, followed by the validation of the instruments adopted to measure them (e.g. dictionaries of keywords). Finally, the data has to be analyzed and interpreted, and the main constructs’ predictive validity must be tested. In the next sections, we describe how we followed these steps.

3.1 Research question and related constructs identification

Our hypotheses center on whether authenticity discussions are a function of reviewer field-specific cultural capital and field autonomy. Thus, for our textual analysis, authenticity was the focal construct and, more specifically, the two types of authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity), which have been a central focus in the literature on authenticity. We anticipate that two other constructs – a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital and the relative autonomy of the field in which the music was produced – will affect the extent to which type and/or moral authenticity is mentioned in a music review.

3.2 Data collection and data preparation

The full corpus of Rolling Stone album reviews is available on the magazine’s official website, and we therefore used Web Content Extractor to download 4,452 reviews. Rolling Stone is a useful source for this investigation because it provides not only a large review database for analysis but also, owing to its longevity, allows estimating a reviewer’s experience (i.e. his or her field-specific cultural capital) because many reviewers worked for the magazine for several years. Furthermore, because Rolling Stone focuses on popular and niche music genres, it facilitates comparing fields with different levels of autonomy (i.e. more heteronomous versus more autonomous fields). Rolling Stone is also an influential magazine (Frith, 1983) and its output is commonly analyzed in empirical analyses of the popular music market (McLeod, 2001). Also important, the full corpus of Rolling Stone reviews during this time period is available online, allowing a comprehensive analysis of the album reviews. These methods are therefore similar in spirit to Kristensen et al.’s (2019) analysis of the Mad Men TV series’ reviews.

We collected the following data for each review: the review’s text, the review’s date, the artist’s name, the album’s name and the reviewer’s name. The resulting dataset includes the entire population of reviews published from 1967 to 2014. A total of 421 reviewers wrote these reviews. Each of these reviewers published an average of 10.61 reviews and referred to a total of 1,404 artists, who each produced 3.17 music albums on average.

Next, we identified the genres for each album. Using the tags that Last.fm associates with each artist (e.g. American, blues-rock, hard-rock, heavy-metal) and Wikipedia’s “List of Popular Genres,” a research assistant identified one music genre for each album (See Table II for more detailed information). The research assistant collected all the tags that Last.fm associated with each artist and then picked a basic music genre, which could be consistently associated with the specific artist from Wikipedia’s list. For instance, Last.fm might list an artist as being associated with the genres of folk, singer-songwriter, Americana and folk-rock. In this case, Wikipedia classifies all four of these genres as part of the basic music genre, folk. However, in some cases, Last.fm associated artists with multiple music genres. For instance, an artist might be tagged as rock, hard-rock, blues-rock and blues. This artist could be associated with either rock or blues, which, according to Wikipedia, are two distinct music genres. In these cases, we followed Last.fm’s approach, which lists an artist’s most important or definitive tag first and the less definitive tags second. Hence, the artist imagined above would be considered a rock instead of a blues musician because rock was listed first. To test this classification approach’s reliability, a second coder manually coded a random sample of 150 artists (about 10 per cent of the total). The percent agreement between the two coders was 92.00 per cent.

After identifying and collecting the avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U, we spell-checked the text and created an MS Word macro to segment the reviews into 4,452 separate text files, which were stored on each of the co-authors’ personal computers.

3.3 Operationalization and dictionary validation

This research used a top-down approach to construct definition, which is common for computer-aided content analysis (Humphreys, 2010; Ludwig et al., 2013), and which uses theoretical constructs as a starting point for creating custom dictionaries to be used for textual analysis. This process began with a preliminary analysis of how Rolling Stone reviewers commonly reference type and moral authenticity – constructs identified in previous research as being important and informative. We identified a random sample of 450 reviews (about 10 per cent of the total), stratified by music genres and decades. The first author followed common qualitative procedures to analyze the reviews (Spiggle, 1994), which occupied 416 (double spaced) pages in total.

More specifically, using Atlas.Ti, the first author applied open, axial and theoretical coding procedures to the reviews (Corbin and Strauss, 1990). This analysis enabled us to identify two different variables associated with type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and two VNC Connect Enterprise 6.7.4 Crack With License Key Latest 2021 related to moral authenticity (i.e. personal authenticity and marketing language). Genre reference refers to words that indicate a particular type of music, such as jazz, blues or country. Relatedly, place reference refers to words that mention a particular location in association with the music – for example, Memphis which is often associated with blues, Jamaica which is often associated with reggae and ska and Detroit which is often associated with Motown. Words referencing genre and place are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist’s music lives up to expectations for a particular type of music genre. Personal authenticity refers to words mentioning an artist’s sincerity or honesty. Marketing language uses words that reference the opposite – a focus on producing music for profit, generating sales and selling out. Words referencing personal authenticity and marketing language are therefore more likely to indicate a reviewer’s consideration of whether an artist produces music from the heart or for monetary gain.

The dictionary validation avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U was next (Humphreys and Wang, 2017). We refined the four dictionaries to minimize the likelihood of false negatives and false positives. First, to ensure that we captured as many of the various ways in which the key concepts could be discussed (and to avoid false negatives), we augmented the original dictionaries with potential synonyms, word stems and tenses (Humphreys and Wang, 2017), as well as additional keywords derived from the related literature on authenticity and popular music (Corciolani, 2014; Grayson and Martinec, 2004; Holt, 2002; Newman and Smith, 2016; Peterson, 1997; Trilling, 1972). Adding these terms to the dictionary increased the likelihood that we would capture a construct when it was discussed. Second, certain words identified via this process had multiple connotations, including connoted meanings that were unrelated to our concepts of interest. Because these could lead to false positives, we tested the dictionaries on the texts and analyzed ten instances at a time to remove words with a high incidence of connoting concepts other than the ones we were interested in (Weber, 2005).

Furthermore, in accordance with Humphreys and Wang (2017), as well as Pennebaker et al. (2007), we asked three external judges to assess whether each proposed dictionary should include each keyword. For instance, should the “place reference” category include the word “Liverpool”? Should the “personal authenticity” category include the word “soulful”? Words remained in the dictionary if at least two coders agreed it should be kept; we removed words only if two judges thought that it should be removed (Humphreys, 2010). This process produced the dictionaries that are described in Table III and which we used for our subsequent analysis.

3.4 Analysis and interpretation

Next, we analyzed the relationships among our key variables. We used the Linguistic Inquiry Word Count (LIWC) software to obtain the frequency of words for each kind of authenticity – type and moral – as a percentage of total words in each review (the descriptive statistics are reported in Table IV). Following similar analyses by Genevsky and Knutson (2015), as well as Ludwig et al. (2013), we used ordinary least squares (OLS) regression to determine whether the interaction between field autonomy and reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital predicted the kind of authenticity discussed in the review.

To measure field autonomy, we counted the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone for a particular genre in a particular year (i.e. genre size). Given Rolling Stone’s importance as an arbiter of mainstream music (Frith, 1983), we can reasonably assume that the genres that reviewers analyze more frequently are more likely to reflect the logic of large-scale production, and the genres least frequently analyzed are more likely to reflect the logic of restricted production. We report the frequency of reviews per genre by decade in Table II.

We estimated the reviewers’ field-specific cultural capital by counting the number of reviews each reviewer wrote and published in Rolling Stone during a specific review’s calendar year (i.e. reviewer experience). As stated, convertion software - Free Activators average number of reviews a reviewer wrote during the time period of our analysis was 10.61 (SD = 33.58), and the range of reviews a single reviewer wrote was 1-366. The average number of reviews in the top quartile was 35.85 (SD = 60.36). Both genre size and reviewer experience are two relative measures; that is, our investigation focuses on whether reviewers with more (versus less) experience treated bigger (versus smaller) music genres or more (versus less) autonomous fields similarly or differently. Because our measures of field-specific cultural capital (i.e. reviewer experience) and field autonomy (i.e. genre size) were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each.

Because Rolling Stone is not the only outlet where music critics can publish their reviews, it is possible that reviewers who wrote few reviews in Rolling Stone could have been contemporaneously writing extensively elsewhere. To the extent this was the case, the number of reviews published in Rolling Stone might poorly reflect a reviewer’s experience and field-specific cultural capital (for example, if a reviewer wrote extensively in other prominent magazines but not much in Rolling Stone). Therefore, to increase confidence in this measure, we tested the extent to which the reviewers in the Rolling Stone database published reviews in other outlets. We extracted a random sample of 45 Rolling Stone reviewers from our data set, which represents about 10 per cent of the total, stratified according to the number of published reviews. Then, we searched for each reviewer in both the Music Magazine Archive (https://mma-napubcoonline-com) and the Entertainment Industry Magazine Archive (Proquest) databases to count how many reviews each one authored during the same period in other outlets. We then assessed the correlation between the number of reviews written by each reviewer in Rolling Stone and their number of reviews in each of the other two databases. If reviewers publishing infrequently in Rolling Stone were publishing frequently in other outlets we would expect a negative correlation, raising concerns about whether publication frequency in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience. Our analysis of the entire sample did not show any significant correlations (rRS-MMA = –0.08, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = 0.04, p > 0.10). We also separately estimated the correlations for those who were above and below the median publication frequency in Rolling Stone for this sample. This additional analysis did not show a significant correlation for reviewers above the median (rRS-MMA = –0.01, p > 0.10; rRS-EIA = –0.02, p > 0.10), but did show a marginally significant positive correlation for those below the median (rRS-MMA = 0.38, p = 0.06; rRS-EIA = 0.39, p = 0.06), suggesting that those writing infrequently in Rolling Stone were also writing infrequently for other outlets. Because this analysis did not produce any significant negative correlations, and did produce a marginally significant positive correlation for reviewers with a lower publication frequency, this increases confidence that number of reviews published in Rolling Stone is a good measure of experience and field-specific cultural capital, especially given the prominence and prestige of Rolling Stone as an outlet for cultural intermediaries.

The regression analyses that we implemented for this research also included several covariates to account for otherwise unexplained variance in our models. Type of artist distinguished among male single artists (566; 40.31 per cent of the total), female single artists (178; 12.68 per cent), male bands (537; 38.25 per cent), female bands (12; 0.85 per cent) and other artists (e.g. male-female bands, various artists’ albums) (111; 7.90 per cent). We measured tags as the number of tags Last.fm associates with a reviewed artist (M = 3.10; SD = 1.15). We then calculated genre diversity as the percentage of music albums associated with more than the average number of tags in a particular music genre per year (M = 1.12; SD = 0.16). We measured artist experience as the number of albums an artist had released at the time of a specific review (M = 2.13; SD = 0.64). Because artist experience and genre diversity were not normally distributed, we applied a Box Cox transformation to each. We measured these covariates, because we suspected that – unconnected to a subfield’s relative autonomy and a reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital – authenticity issues might depend on the type of artist, the artist’s relative experience or the extent to which a genre was clearly or loosely defined. We also controlled for date, measured as the day on which a music album review was released, to account for any variance that might occur in a particular issue; for example, a holiday issue will probably contain more album reviews about boxed sets. Finally, we controlled for word count, i.e. the total number of words of each music album review (M = 375.30; SD = 347.28), and words per sentence (M = 24.15; SD = 5.50), assuming that longer sentences and reviews may be more – or less – likely to include certain kinds of analyses. (We also modeled the effect of artist experience [moderated by reviewer’s field-specific cultural capital] and the effect of genre diversity [moderated by genre size]. We discuss these effects at the end of the findings section.)

3.5 Validation

As Humphreys and Wang (2017) suggest, testing the main constructs’ predictive validity helps to increase confidence that a study’s constructs are measured appropriately, and that the analytic methods are appropriate for capturing construct relationships. One approach that Humphreys and Wang (2017) recommend is a triangulation analysis, which tests the relationship between a study’s key constructs and other constructs that may not be central to the study, but which may be expected to be related to a study’s constructs in accordance with construct definitions or previous theory (Humphreys, 2010; Pennebaker and King, 1999). To the extent that these expected correlations emerge, confidence in the construct validity is enhanced.

Consequently, we ran an analysis to check whether our main dependent variables correlated with the other related constructs. Regarding type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference), we correlated our two variables with the affiliation dictionary developed and validated by Pennebaker et al. (2007). This dictionary was created to capture a person’s fundamental need to feel part of a social group, as defined by McClelland (1987). Because judgments about type authenticity are also about deciding whether something is part of a group, we anticipated a degree of convergence between the two concepts. For example, a few of the keywords included in the affiliation dictionary are “associates,” “belong” and “tradition.” As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between affiliation and genre reference (r = 0.02; p < 0.05) and between affiliation and place reference (r = 0.10; p < 0.001).

Regarding moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity), we correlated our two variables with the dictionary developed and validated by Opoku et al. (2006). This dictionary, which is based on Aaker’s (1997) five traits of brand personality, measures, among other things, a brand’s level of sincerity. Opoku et al. (2006, p. 31) refer to sincerity as reflecting an entity’s “true […] nature”, so we expected that this dictionary would correlate with our measures of moral authenticity. As expected, we found a positive and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and personal authenticity (r = 0.05; p < 0.001) and a negative and statistically significant correlation between sincerity and marketing language (r = –0.04; p < 0.01).

4. Results

Using the PROCESS macro for SPSS (Model 1, Hayes, 2013), we estimated four models to test whether the interaction effects between reviewer experience (i.e. field-specific cultural capital) and genre size (i.e. field autonomy), predicted genre reference, place reference, marketing language and personal authenticity (i.e. type authenticity and moral authenticity). The results of the four OLS regressions (see Table V) show that three of the four hypothesized interactions are statistically significant, whereas one is marginally significant. The interaction between reviewer experience and genre size as a predictor of genre reference is negative and marginally significant (ß = –0.005; t = –1.915, p < 0.10), whereas that of place reference is negative and statistically significant (ß = –0.022; t = –2.950, p < 0.01). In contrast, the interaction effect of reviewer experience and genre size on marketing language is significantly positive (ß = 0.009; t = 2.209, p < 0.05), as is that of personal authenticity (ß = 0.013; t = 2.787, p < 0.01).

Figure 1 graphically illustrates the interactions and plots the conditional effects of reviewer experience at various levels of genre size for each dependent variable. We also summarize the results in Figure 2. If reviewers follow the logic of the field that produced a cultural product, we would expect that reviewers of music produced by smaller (i.e. more autonomous) fields would focus less on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and more on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). We would also expect that reviewers of music produced by larger (i.e. more heteronomous) fields would focus more on language related to type authenticity (i.e. genre reference and place reference) and less on language related to moral authenticity (i.e. marketing language and personal authenticity). Our hypotheses predict that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are likely to follow this pattern but that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are likely to do the Smart Defrag 6.1 Crack Download - Crack Key For U plot our results in Figure 1. In each of the plots for this figure, the frequency of referencing the relevant language is indicated by the y-axis, and reviewer experience is indicated by the x-axis. Within each plot, lines of different styles (solid, dashed, etc.) represent different genre sizes (i.e. different levels of field autonomy). Because our hypotheses predict differences between reviewers with different experience (i.e. different levels of field-specific cultural capital), moderated by genre size (field autonomy/heteronomy), support for our hypotheses would be indicated by different slopes for the lines in the plots.

The general pattern of results shown in Figure 1 supports our hypotheses. First, consider the effects when genre size was large (high heteronomy). To do this, focus on the small-dashed lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the largest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that, for these heteronomous genres, type authenticity will be more important and moral authenticity will be less important. We hypothesized that less-experienced reviewers are more likely than more-experienced reviewers to reflect these standards. We would therefore expect a downward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language) and an upward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language). The small-dashed lines are indeed downward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are upward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

Now consider the effects when genre size was small (high autonomy). To do this, focus on the solid lines in Figure 1, which represent the effects for the smallest genres in our data set. Recall Bourdieu’s prediction that type authenticity will be less important for autonomous genres and moral authenticity will be more important. Given our hypotheses, we would expect an upward-sloping line for type authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are more likely to use this language) and a downward-sloping line for moral authenticity language (because reviewers with more experience are less likely to use this language). The solid lines are indeed upward-sloping in Figure 1(a) and 1(b) (type-authenticity language) and are downward-sloping in Figure 1(c) and 1(d) (moral-authenticity language).

While the visual pattern of data in Figure 1 suggests general support for our hypotheses, we performed statistical tests on each model by using the Johnson–Neyman technique (Hayes and Matthes, 2009; Johnson and Neyman, 1936), which calculates the range of the moderator in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically different from zero. This technique is also called a floodlight analysis (Spiller et al., 2013). The points of transition identified through this method distinguish areas, if any, in which the independent variable’s effect on the dependent variable is statistically distinct (Hayes and Rockwood, 2017).

Our hypotheses were supported for all the associated tests for this analysis, except in the case of genre reference language when genres were smaller. For this dependent variable [Figure 3(a)], there is only one significant Johnson–Neyman region, which corresponds to a genre size > 8.308. This means that, for more heteronomous fields (genre size > 8.308), reviewer experience has a statistically significant and negative effect on genre reference. That is, as predicted by H1a, when the genre size was big, this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital. However, H2a was not supported for this dependent variable. When genre size was smaller (genre size < 8.308), reviewer experience had no effect on the likelihood of mentioning this type-authenticity variable (See the gray regions in Figure 3). (See the Appendix for the complete table of conditional effects of reviewer experience on the dependent variables at different values of genre size.)

For place reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(b)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.502), this type-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1a. For more autonomous fields (genre size < 4.435), this type-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2a.

PROCESS also identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions for marketing language, which is a measure of moral authenticity [see Figure 3(c)]. For more heteronomous fields (genre size > 6.601), reviewer experience has a positive and statistically significant effect on marketing language. When discussing music produced by more heteronomous fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. More autonomous fields (genre size < 1.372) exhibited the opposite tendency. In these fields, this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

For personal authenticity (also a measure of moral authenticity), PROCESS again identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 3(d)]. More heteronomous fields exhibited a positive, significant effect of reviewer experience on personal authenticity (genre size > 5.241). That is, in these fields, this moral-authenticity language was less likely to Pinnacle Studio 23.1 Crack + License Key Free Download 2020 discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H1b. In contrast, in more autonomous fields (genre size < 1.386), this moral-authenticity language was more likely to be discussed by reviewers with lower (versus higher) field-specific cultural capital, supporting H2b.

While many of this study’s hypotheses were supported by the data, we tested two sets of hypotheses that were only partially supported, and where our interpretation of the results is therefore more speculative. The first set of hypotheses centered on the effect of genre diversity. We anticipated that the likelihood of discussing different types of authenticity would be affected by genre diversity, moderated by genre size. We believed that, when a genre has higher internal diversity, widely agreed-upon stereotypic elements would be less likely, making it more difficult for a reviewer to discuss type authenticity (Mattsson et al., 2010). We therefore expected that more-diverse genres would, relative to less-diverse genres, focus less on type authenticity and more on moral authenticity. We further expected that this tendency would be stronger in larger genres, where the logic of large-scale production and its emphasis on type authenticity would be more disrupted by genre diversity.

Our analysis showed that the genre diversity × genre size interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (genre reference and marketing language), and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. An investigation of this interaction showed that, as predicted, the authenticity language used in reviews of music from small (autonomous) genres was unaffected by genre diversity, but that the authenticity language used in reviews of music from large (heteronomous) genres was affected (Figure 4). However, while we had anticipated that diversity would decrease focus on type authenticity and increase focus on moral authenticity, our results indicate a decreased focus on both. Reviews of music from more-diverse genres were, relative to reviews of music from less-diverse genres, less likely to mention genre (type authenticity) and less likely to mention marketing language (moral authenticity).

Details of this analysis are depicted in Figure 4. For genre reference (a measure of type authenticity), PROCESS identified one Johnson–Neyman significance region (Figure 4[c]). This means that, for a genre size higher than 1.391 (see the gray regions in Figure 4), an increase in genre diversity led reviewers to mention significantly less genre references. Similarly, for marketing language (a measure of moral authenticity), one Johnson–Neyman region was identified, corresponding to genre size > 5.134 [Figure 4(d)]. Thus, for larger genres, genre diversity had a negative and statistically significant effect on marketing language. The result for genre reference supports our intuition that the co-existence of different types in more diverse genres makes it less productive or more challenging to discuss authenticity relative to a particular type. However, the result for marketing language does not support our expectation that, when type authenticity is less important, discussions of moral authenticity naturally rise. In fact, it supports the opposite. Although moral authenticity is already relatively unimportant in larger genres, it could be that – to the extent it is important – it is linked to type authenticity. For example, while success in a field of large-scale production such as country music hinges primarily on being authentic to type, it may be additionally helpful if the artist is also perceived to be personally authentic to the type. A musician who follows the standards of bluegrass music may be considered to be high in type authenticity, but his or her authenticity may be enhanced if the musician grew up in a part of the country known for bluegrass and is therefore also playing music that is morally authentic to him or her. However, our results suggest that greater diversity in a field of large-scale production (for example, greater diversity in what counts as traditional bluegrass music) may make it more difficult for reviewers to discuss Agisoft Metashape Crack 1.7.3 Build 12337 + License Key version of moral authenticity.

A second set of hypotheses centered on artist experience. Given Marshall’s (2006) observation about the importance of artists establishing a personal connection with their fans (even in fields of large-scale production), we anticipated that, as an artist’s career develops, he or she would increasingly focus on moral authenticity, regardless of whether he or she works in a field of restricted or large-scale production. We also reasoned that it is harder for an artist to build moral authenticity after only one music album and easier to build it over time. Because the central hypothesis for our work is that less experienced reviewers are more likely to assess artists on the artists’ terms (and that more experienced reviewers are less likely to do this), we hypothesized that less experienced reviewers would focus more on moral authenticity when reviewing experienced artists and more on type authenticity when reviewing less experienced artists.

Our analysis showed that the artist experience × reviewer experience interaction was a significant predictor of only two of our dependent variables (place reference and personal authenticity) and in ways that only partially supported our hypotheses. Looking at a plot of the results, the general pattern supports our hypotheses for these two dependent variables. Consider the solid line in Figure 5(a) and 5(b), which represent the least experienced artists in our data set. This line slopes downward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference (a measure of type authenticity) and slopes upward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity (a measure of moral authenticity). The short-dashed lines in Figure 5(a) and 5(b) represent the most experienced artists in our data set. As expected, this line slopes upward with reviewer experience in the plot for mentions of place reference and downward with reviewer experience for mentions of personal authenticity. So, as expected, less experienced reviewers are more likely than more experienced reviewers to mention type authenticity for less experienced artists and moral authenticity for more experienced artists.

Figure 5 also shows that, for place reference, PROCESS identified two Johnson-Neyman significance regions [Figure 5(c)]. The first region falls below an artist experience equal to 1.632, whereas the second region corresponds to an artist experience higher than 2.549 (See the gray regions in Figure 5). This result shows that, for less experienced artists (artist experience < 1.632), reviewers with less experience discussed place references significantly more than reviewers with more experience (i.e. reviewer experience negatively affects place reference). In contrast, for more experienced artists (artist experience > 2.549), reviewers with more experience paid more attention to place reference than less experienced reviewers (i.e. reviewer experience positively affects place reference). However, for personal authenticity, only one Johnson-Neyman region was identified, corresponding to artist experience < 2.173 [Figure 5(d)]. For less expert artists, reviewer experience had a statistically significant and positive effect on personal authenticity. These tests provide partial support for the idea that, as an artist’s career progresses, a reviewer with less experience is more likely to focus on moral authenticity whereas a reviewer with more experience is more likely to focus on type authenticity. And, at a more general level, the patterns reinforce the idea that reviewers with more experience are systematically different from reviewers with less experience.

5. Discussion and implications

Cultural intermediaries explain to target audiences how a cultural product should be understood and evaluated, and therefore play an important role in shaping the reception of these products. However, the nature of an intermediary’s influence depends on the standards that he or she uses when interpreting a cultural product. It is therefore important to understand the factors that influence the selection of these standards. This research tests whether Rolling Stone music critics mirror the authenticity standards that are important to musical artists, or whether they apply different standards. This question is theoretically important because Bourdieu was ambivalent about the answer. In certain writings, Bourdieu suggests that cultural intermediaries try to adhere to the standards that are important to the creator, whereas in others he observes that cultural intermediaries operate according to their personal logic, even if that logic is separate and distinct from the artist’s logic. Our results suggest that both of Bourdieu’s observations are true, depending on the cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital. Figure 2 summarizes our results.

More specifically, the pattern of effects indicates that reviewers with less experience (and thus lower field-specific cultural capital) are more likely to apply the authenticity standards that Bourdieu predicts are important to artists in a particular subfield. For instance, when reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with less experience are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity. Furthermore, when reviewing music produced by larger, more heteronomous subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. However, the pattern is opposite for reviewers with more experience. These reviewers show a tendency to apply authenticity standards that differ from the standards that Bourdieu predicted are important to artists in the subfield. When reviewing music produced by smaller, more autonomous subfields, reviewers with more experience are more likely to focus on type authenticity and less likely to focus on moral authenticity. Moreover, when reviewing music produced by larger (more heteronomous) subfields, these reviewers are more likely to focus on moral authenticity and less likely to focus on type authenticity.

While Bourdieu did not specifically propose that field-specific cultural capital might be the key to unlock his ambivalence about cultural intermediaries, past research on field-specific cultural capital helps explain this result. Fields are social spaces where members compete for status and, as we explained earlier, research has suggested that those with less field-specific cultural capital are more likely to follow expectations, whereas those with more field-specific cultural capital are more likely to distinguish themselves by deviating from expectations. Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that reviewers with less experience would mirror the standards that are important to the artists, whereas those with more experience might focus on the opposite. Although some work has recognized that cultural intermediaries may differ from each other with regard to their stance toward the artist and the consumer (Kuipers, 2012) and that they may adjust their standards when the logic of a field changes (Glynn and Lounsbury, 2005), this research is the first to identify a cultural intermediary’s field-specific cultural capital as a factor that systematically produces differences among cultural intermediaries.

This paper focuses on comparing the standards reflected in the appraisals of cultural intermediaries with the standards of the artists being reviewed. However, an important area for future research, which this paper does not address, is the potential influence of the standards that are important to consumers. Figure 6 illustrates a theoretical space that simultaneously considers the standards held by artists and by consumers, and thus indicates four general positions that a cultural intermediary can take. As the table indicates, a cultural intermediary can take a stance that is – or is not – in line with the artist’s standards and which is – or is not – in line with consumer standards. Given the cultural intermediary’s role as a translator, one might expect them to always adopt standards similar to those of consumers, but research has identified circumstances in which a cultural intermediary’s standards differ from those of consumers (Chávez, 2012; Coulter et al., 2003; Gurrieri et al., 2016; Wright, 2005).

Our research compared the rows in Figure 6, namely, reviewers who apply standards that are either the same as, or different from, the artist. We found that reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the first row of the table (applying the Paint Tool SAI v2 Crack + Free Full Version Download Here standards as the artist), whereas those with higher field-specific cultural capital are more likely to be situated in the second row of the table (applying different standards). Based on previous research, we have proposed that reviewers with more field-specific cultural capital situate themselves in the second row because they are motivated primarily by a desire to differentiate themselves from reviewers with lower field-specific cultural capital, who are situated in the first row. It could be that – like the Flaubert reviewers characterized by Bourdieu – these reviewers are applying their own internal standards, without regard for the standards held by typical consumers of the product or by typical readers of the review. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 4 of Figure 6. To the extent that more experienced reviewers exhibit these tendencies, this might suggest that a cultural producer should pay less attention to (and, if possible, try to navigate away from) cultural intermediaries with significant experience as intermediaries. This is because such intermediaries are speaking primarily to an internal audience of other intermediaries, and not to stakeholder groups that are important to the cultural producer.

However, it could be that reviewers with higher field-specific cultural capital are more attuned to consumer standards than those with lower field-specific cultural capital, and that their differentiation from these less-experienced reviewers is because of a desire and ability to better connect with certain target consumers. Such reviewers would be placed in Cell 3 of Table VII. While many cultural producers would bristle in response to reviewers who apply standards that differ from the standards they were considering when they produced their works, some may nonetheless appreciate the benefit of being effectively interpreted for a particular audience. Consider a musician from Cuba who seeks to succeed in the field of restricted production by combining the genre of her home country (salsa) with the genre of her youth (rap). As an artist focusing on the avant-garde, she views her music as being a unique and morally authentic expression of her true self, and is more concerned about what other musicians think of her work than what the general public thinks. This musician may not mind (and may even appreciate) a review that evaluates her music negatively with regard to type authenticity because she knows that her audience eschews type authenticity. This musician avant browser bewertung - Crack Key For U alternatively appreciate a review that evaluates her music positively with regard to type authenticity, especially if the positive review is targeted to customers who care about that standard and therefore results in popularity and sales. Niche artists who become more popular often struggle with concerns about selling out (Corciolani, 2014), but the benefit of greater financial reward is sometimes worth the cost.

A further important step for future research is to examine whether a similar pattern of results can be found among other cultural intermediaries, particularly those in domains other than music. The results of our research support the premise that those who are new to a field tend to follow stereotypic or expected patterns, whereas those who are more expert to a field tend to deviate. A similar dynamic might be expected in fields such as the restaurant market, the cinema market, and the tourism market. However, some research (Beunza and Garud, 2007) has suggested that those who are new to a field may tend to be more iconoclastic instead of more stereotypic. This is not what we found in our research context, but it seems likely that fields differ on this dimension. Therefore, it may be informative to identify fields in which there is a higher expectation that newcomers will exhibit either the one or the other behavior, and to assess the potential impact on the content of cultural intermediaries’ reviews. Another area for future research is to explore how other differences between cultural intermediaries might predict the standards they apply. For example, remembering that Bourdieu’s framework was specifically designed to accommodate how a player’s personal idiosyncrasies might influence how he or she plays the game, future research might examine how personality differences between cultural intermediaries might encourage those with the same field-specific cultural capital to use different strategies and, thus, apply different standards.

Finally, reviews now exist ubiquitously on online platforms such as Amazon, Yelp!, and Hotels.com, in addition to a number of social shopping and technology sites and blogs. Some reviewers even gain status to become known as experts or thought leaders (McQuarrie et al., 2012). Do the dynamics of field-specific cultural capital operate similarly in these very different contexts, where reviewers exist outside of the sanctioned mass media field of magazines? In a world where both writing and reading reviews is common and influential, understanding the ways in which reviewer standards change the nature of the field promises to shed light on the ways in which consumers and producers interpret and enjoy not just artistic products, but perhaps more mundane products such as consumer electronics, cleaning products and building supplies.

Figures

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

Figure 1.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and genre size on the four dependent variables

Opens in a new window.

Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

Figure 2.

Summary of findings for reviewers with more (and less) fieldspecific cultural capital

Opens in a new window.

Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 3.

Conditional effect of reviewer experience on the four dependent variables at different values of genre size (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 4.

Interaction effects of genre diversity and genre size on genre reference and marketing language (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Opens in a new window.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Figure 5.

Interaction effects of reviewer experience and artist experience on place reference and personal authenticity (with identification of Johnson–Neyman points)

Источник: https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/EJM-01-2019-0095/full/html

Rock Jaw Avant Air Review

Not the flashiest earbuds, but the Rock Jaw Avant Air are assured performers for an affordable price as a result of their balanced sound, decent battery life and rugged design.

Pros

  • Measured, balanced sound
  • Plenty of battery life
  • Rugged design

Cons

  • Look a bit odd
  • Beaten for dynamics
  • Inconvenient process for pairing with other devices

Key Features

  • Battery lifeTwelve hours per charge and 39 in total
  • Bluetooth streamingSBC, AAC and aptX for compatibility with Android and iOS devices
  • Water resistanceStronger IPX5 resistance against sweat and rain

Introduction

The Avant Air are Rock Jaw’s first entry into the true wireless market. A small, British family-run audio brand that started in 2012, they’re in a true wireless sea where there are plenty of sharks looking to gobble them up.

And so, perhaps wisely, the Avant Air eschew features such as ANC and Transparency mode for a stripped-down experience. And given they initially launched at £119.99, the drop to its current (and seemingly permanent) price of £74.95 appears wise, the Avant Air carving out a niche between the oh-so cheap options and budget heavyweights.

Design

  • Odd appearance
  • Rugged design
  • Swappable wing-tips

The Avant Air aren’t lookers by any means. Their shape is like Cambridge Audio’s Melomania Touch, but the Avant Air take on a more rugged, insect-like appearance.

Perhaps that’s harsh, but the antennae-like protruding fins serve to keep the earbuds in the ear. While I’ve not found time to take them out on runs, their shape suggests they have the qualities required for such use.

Rock Jaw Avant Air earbuds

In general use, the earbuds sat tightly in the ears, although they did become slightly loose over the course of long walks. So, some tweaking is required; overall, though, the design’s passive isolating effect works well to smother most external sounds. A snug fit also has the effect of boosting bass, with the selection of ear-tips offering further means of finding the best fit.

Either one of the wing-tip and boarder ring can be pulled off to give the earbuds a more ‘normal’ appearance. You may want to consider taking the silicone underside off for a clean, too – my review sample seemed a magnet for dust.

The Rock Jaw employ touch controls, and oftentimes with earbuds less than £100, that can cause anxiety; but the Avant Air perform well, covering all the bases. A tap controls playback with a quick double-tap for volume on either earbud. Three taps on the left side activates a mobile device’s voice assistant, while three taps on the right launches Game mode. Track skipping is handled by a hold. When it comes to responsiveness, if the first tap didn’t register, the second usually did.

Rock Jaw Avant Air charging case

The charging case supports USB-C, wireless and fast-charging, and there’s a button around the back that resets the earbuds for pairing to another device. The only misstep is that the charging lights are inside the case, so you can’t see the current charge without having to open the case.

Features

  • Long battery life
  • Good water resistance
  • Can’t use with two devices at once

There’s no control app accompanying the Avant Air, which means there’s no no way to fiddle with the earbuds’ sound profile. The T5 Ultra Connect had tuning filters to customise sound, but the only real means of tweaking audio will be experimenting with the ear-tips.

Battery life is 12 hours per charge and 39 hours in total – although 39 isn’t exactly divisible by 12. In any case, it’s a distance ahead of some bigger brands at this price. I used the Avant Air as my main pair, and if you include the 11 or so hours to ‘burn’ them in, it took a week to run the battery down. That’s good going, so longer than a week is eminently doable.

Rock Jaw Avant Air case and earbuds

Bluetooth connectivity is v5.2, with SBC, AAC and aptX onboard for streaming audio. No issues were had with signal strength in busy areas, but in more normal situations the Rock Jaw were prone to some drops – and I’m not entirely sure of the reason.

The Avant Air don’t support connection to two devices at the same time. In fact, to pair with a new device requires the earbuds to be reset. A few attempts didn’t work, so it was easier to hit ‘forget’ in the smartphone settings to put them into pairing mode. Nevertheless, it’s a bit of an inconvenience.

There’s no built-in voice assistant but Alexa, Google and Siri can all be called upon via touch controls. Water resistance is IPX5, which makes the Rock Jaw more capable of handling wet weather than IPX4 rated earbuds.

Rock Jaw Avant Air from side

Game mode puts the Avant Air into what’s described as a “super-low latency”. Activation may come at a cost to audio quality, but while playing Sonic Racing on an iPad Pro, I heard no difference. A nice feature to have, but essential? I’m not sure. Playback was at least smooth.

A last word on call quality, which was average for a true wireless. Pick up of voices was faint at times, and the Rock Jaw appear susceptible to picking up background noise in busy areas.

Sound quality

  • Balanced, measured sound
  • Beaten for dynamism
  • Smooth vocal delivery

It could be said the budget true wireless market suffers from an overwhelming amount of choice, so my first thought was to judge the Avant Air on how they stand out. But that’s not the vibe they go for. If anything, the focus is on getting the basics right in a solid, unflashy way.

With a stream of Massive Attack’s Teardrop playing, the Avant Air handles the bassline fine, although there’s a tempered aspect about how strongly bass is conveyed at normal listening levels. Flick up the volume and the Avant Air exude more confidence. Compare them to the one of our favourites around this price – the PurePlay Z3 2.0 (in LDX mode) –– and the transmits more depth and power with low frequencies.

Rock Jaw Avant Air in the case

Pushing up the volume helps the Rock Jaw find surer footing. There’s a reserved aspect to them at normal listening levels, their feel for dynamism best described as fair. But they open up and become more fluent, although compared again to the Lypertek with a listen of Joe Hisaishi’s Water Traveller, the Lypertek earbuds are more expressive performers.

At the top end the Lypertek earbuds edge the Rock Jaw with a sharper, brighter and more refined approach. And their sense of energy and rhythmic ability sees them ahead, too – but that’s not to discount the Avant Air’s approach.

The Avant Air’s more measured and composed approach showcases a nice, even-handed sense of tonality. Definition is broadly described, but that’s par for the course at this price – and, in general, detail and clarity are solidly conveyed. Their balance makes them a good option across a spread of music genres, neither overplaying nor underplaying the music they’re fed.

Rock Jaw Avant Air from the top down

Vocals are delivered smoothly, the tuning of the earbuds keeping sibilant tones away. There perhaps isn’t as much emotion in the delivery of Hannah Reid’s voice in London Grammar’s Lord It’s a Feeling, but there’s a better sense of space awarded to vocals than the Lypertek grants them, with more care in the balance between vocals and instrumentation.

The Avant Air offer solid timing, along with a detailed, clean delivery (noise is minimised). They’re not the last word in dynamics – but, in other regards, they’re a consistently enjoyable listen.

Latest deals

Should you buy it?

If you value the simple things There’s little that’s complicated about the Avant Air: their audio output is balanced for the price, with lengthy battery life and solid fit. They’re a more assured pair of earbuds than cheaper true wireless.

If you want more control over the sound At the original price the Avant Air were mixing up against efforts with their own control apps, so if you’re someone who likes to tweak the sound to their tastes, consider going up a price bracket.

Final thoughts

Get past the odd appearance and the Malware hunter pro crack download - Crack Key For U Jaw Avant Air are polished performers. In terms of features, there’s nothing here you haven’t seen before, but the Avant Air put in a solid and reliable performance that isn’t to be underestimated.

Given the price – currently £74.95 on the Rock Jaw site – the Avant Air find themselves in bargain territory. If smarts aren’t of interest and noise cancelling isn’t needed, the Avant Air’s focus on the simple things appeals, especially for those looking for a pair of buds for personal use and workouts.

How we test

We test every headphones we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Tested with real world use

Tested with music streaming services

FAQs

Does the Rock Jaw Avant Air support multi-point Bluetooth pairing?

No, these earbuds can only connect to one device at a time.

Full specs

UK RRP

Manufacturer

IP rating

Battery Hours

Wirless charging

Fast Charging

Weight

ASIN

Release Date

Driver (s)

Connectivity

Colours

Frequency Range

Headphone Type

Sensitivity

Voice Assistant

Rock Jaw Avant Air

£74.99

Rock Jaw

IPX5

39

Yes

Yes

65 G

B096VY1BTC

2021

Custom designed

Bluetooth 5.2

Black

15 40000 – Hz

True Wireless

102 dB

via mobile device

Источник: https://www.trustedreviews.com/reviews/rock-jaw-avant-air

Avant Browser nLite Addon 11.7 Build 30 Download

Avant Browser nLite Addon 11.7 Build 30 Description:

If you want to reduce the time needed for installing your OS you can use nLite addons to create your own bootable image of Windows.

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IDM Crack 6.39 Build 5 Serial Key

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IDM Crack

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IDM Crack

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Источник: https://crackreview.com/idm-crack/
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