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Sociologia della comunicazione 10 marzo 2008. L’ascesa dei mass media: la radio nella seconda guerra mondiale Franklin Delano Roosevelt “We Choose Human.

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Presentation on theme: "Sociologia della comunicazione 10 marzo 2008. L’ascesa dei mass media: la radio nella seconda guerra mondiale Franklin Delano Roosevelt “We Choose Human."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sociologia della comunicazione 10 marzo 2008

2 L’ascesa dei mass media: la radio nella seconda guerra mondiale Franklin Delano Roosevelt “We Choose Human Freedom” May 27, 1941 (radio address) General Charles de Gaulle parla alla BBC durante la guerra. “La radio sarà per il ventesimo secolo quello che la stampa è stata per il diciannovesimo -Josef Goebbels, 1933.

3 propaganda… Leni Riefenstahl La vittoria della fede (1933) Frank Capra Why we fight (1942-1945)

4 propaganda…

5 Imperialismo culturale: media e egemonia americana nel secondo dopoguerra

6 Tre risposte al ‘problema’ del potere dei media a.Mass society theory b.Mass communications theory c.British cultural and media studies

7 In the first phase, which lasts from the turn of the century to the late nineteen thirties the media, where they were developed in Europe and North America, were attributed considerable power to shape opinion and belief, change habitus of life, actively mould behaviour and impose political systems even against resistance. Such views were not based on scientific investigation but were based on empirical observation of the sudden extension of the audience to large majorities and on the great attraction of the popular press, cinema and radio. (Denis McQuail “ The influence and effects of mass media ” in J. Curran et al (eds) Mass Communication and Society. London: Open University, 1977, p. 72)

8 Mass society theory 1.Mass media are a negative and disruptive force in society and should be controlled. 2.Mass media have the power to directly influence the attitudes and behavior of ordinary people. 3.People are vulnerable to the power of mass media because they have become isolated and alienated from traditional social institutions that have protected them from propaganda and manipulation. 4.The social changes brought about by the disruptive influence of mass media will result in the advent of more authoritarian and centrally controlled societies. 5.Mass media also bring about the decline in cultural standards and values by promoting trivial and demeaning ideas and activities that threaten civilised behaviour. (citato in Kevin Williams Understanding Media Theory, London: Arnold, 2003, p. 29)

9 The second stage extends from about 1940 to the early 1960s and is strongly shaped by growth of mass communication research in the United States and the application of empirical method to specific questions about the effects and effectiveness of mass communication … In practice, a small number of much cited studies provided substance for the general view of media effects and effectiveness … Basically this version affirmed the ineffectiveness and impotency of mass media and their subservience to other more fundamental components in any potential situation of influence. (McQuail 1977: 72/73)

10 Il modello di comunicazione di Lasswell Chi dice cosa a chi attraverso quale canale con quale effetto Who (says) What (to) Whom (in) What Channel (with) What Effect (Harold Lasswell 1902-1978)

11 Mass communication research The outcome of these [Hovland and Lasswell ’ s] experiments was the recognition that the effect of a particular item or image was not a simple linear consequence of the content of that item or image. Rather perceptions were conditioned by the predispositions of audience members. People were not the passive, isolated and impressionable entitites of mass society theory but individuals who could ‘ interpret what they saw and heard in line with their own already established beliefs ’. Above all people exist within groups and their immediate set of social relations was seen as an important determinant of their understanding of media messages. (Williams 2003: 174)

12 Mass communication research In their study, The People ’ s Choice [1944], of a presidential election they found the media did not play a significant part in influencing how people voted. Social characteristics such as religion and class were seen as more important factors in determining voting behaviour, with th media reinforcing existing beliefs rather than changing them. They argued personal influence is significant in changing people ’ s opinion. (Williams 2003: 174-175)

13 c. Cultural and media studies Stuart Hall (1932-) Il messaggio mediatico è una struttura discorsiva o linguistica, che dà significato alla realtà e la costruisce effettivamente, ossia è una rappresentazione

14 (Stuart Hall ‘ Encoding/Decoding ’ in S. During (ed) The Cultural Studies Reader. London and New York: Routledge, 1993, p. 923, c1980)

15 Before this message can have an ‘ effect ’ (however defined), satisfy a need, or be put to a ‘ use ’, it must first be appropriated as a meaningful discourse and be meaningfully decoded. It is this set of decoded meanings which ‘ have an effect ’, influence, entertain, instruct or persuade, with very complex perceptual, cognitive, emotional, ideological or behavioural consequences. In a ‘ determinate ’ moment the structure employs a code and yields a ‘ message ’ : at another determinate moment the ‘ message ’, via its decodings, issues into structures of social practice. (Stuart Hall ‘ Encoding/Decoding ’ in S. During (ed) The Cultural Studies Reader. London and New York: Routledge, 1993, p. 923)

16 My own view is that events, relations, structures do have conditions of existence and real effects, outside the spere of the discursive: but it is only within the discursive, and subject to its specific conditions, limits and modalities, do they have or can be constructed within meaning … how things are ‘ represented ’ and the ‘ machineries ’ and regimes of representation in a culture do play a constitutive and not merely a reflexive, after-the-event, role. This gives questions of culture and ideology, and the scenarios of representation – subjectivity, identity, politics – a formative, not merely an expressive, place in the constitution of social and political life.(Stuart Hall ‘ New Ethnicities ” in D. Morley and K. Chen eds Stuart Hall: Critical Dialogues in Cultural Studies. London and New York: Routledge, p. 443)

17 And here is now another example: I am at the barber's, and a copy of Paris- Match is offered to me. On the cover, a young Negro in a French uniform is saluting, with his eyes uplifted, probably fixed on a fold of the tricolour. All this is the meaning of the picture. But, whether naively or not, I see very well what it signifies to me: that France is a great Empire, that all her sons, without any color discrimination, faithfully serve under her flag, and that there is no better answer to the detractors of an alleged colonialism than the zeal shown by this Negro in serving his so- called oppressors. I am therefore again faced with a greater semiological system: there is a signifier, itself already formed with a previous system (a black soldier is giving the French salute); there is a signified (it is here a purposeful mixture of Frenchness and militariness); finally, there is a presence of the signified through the signifier. (Roland Barthes ‘Myth Today’ in Mythologies http://www.library.utoronto.ca/moorish/illustex/barthes myth.htm)


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