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Presentation on theme: "/~taflinge/com101/ com101home.html To view PowerPoints go to Microsoft.com and download PowerPoint Viewer."— Presentation transcript:

1 /~taflinge/com101/ com101home.html To view PowerPoints go to Microsoft.com and download PowerPoint Viewer

2 An understanding of media content as a text that provides insight into our culture and our lives

3 Critical Theories

4 The analysis of media messages to try to figure out how they affect people and the societies in which they live. The analysis of media messages to try to figure out how they affect people and the societies in which they live. Here are some common ones: Here are some common ones:

5 Semiotics The science of signs and symbols The science of signs and symbols Looks at how people create and understand signs and symbols in order to comprehend communication Looks at how people create and understand signs and symbols in order to comprehend communication examples examples

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11 Semiotics can also be known as symbolic interactionism by those who don’t like semiotics

12 Psychoanalysis Examines how mass media messages influence the audience’s social rules in order to suppress instinctive anti-social impulses Examines how mass media messages influence the audience’s social rules in order to suppress instinctive anti-social impulses

13 Sociological Analysis The most common type of analysis done by critics The most common type of analysis done by critics Comes in many flavors that have evolved over the years Comes in many flavors that have evolved over the years

14 Direct Effects Model Often considered propaganda Often considered propaganda Based on the idea that people are passive targets of mass media messages that cannot help but be influenced Based on the idea that people are passive targets of mass media messages that cannot help but be influenced Points at such messages as advertising and government propaganda that people will follow like lemmings Points at such messages as advertising and government propaganda that people will follow like lemmings Denies that people are individuals Denies that people are individuals

15 Limited Effects or indirect effects Model Found that people may take in the messages, but will turn to opinion leaders for how to interpret and follow or not follow those messages Found that people may take in the messages, but will turn to opinion leaders for how to interpret and follow or not follow those messages People with strong opinions are unlikely to change them People with strong opinions are unlikely to change them People pay more attention to messages they already agree with People pay more attention to messages they already agree with The most persuadable don’t pay attention The most persuadable don’t pay attention

16 Critical Cultural Model Rather than effect, it looks at how people use and construct messages Rather than effect, it looks at how people use and construct messages The media control the flow of information and what can be discussed The media control the flow of information and what can be discussed Those who control the media control the message Those who control the media control the message Rooted in neo-Marxism – those who can control the culture control the media and thus society Rooted in neo-Marxism – those who can control the culture control the media and thus society

17 Agenda Setting The media don’t tell us what to think, they tell us what to think about The media don’t tell us what to think, they tell us what to think about Examples: Examples: Martin Luther Martin Luther Tom Paine Tom Paine William Randolph Hearst William Randolph Hearst Modern news Modern news

18 Book of the Dead

19 Ramses II and the Battle of Kadesh

20 The Torah

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26 Uses and Gratifications People actively seek and use those media messages that they personally feel gives them something People actively seek and use those media messages that they personally feel gives them something They use the media to get something they want They use the media to get something they want They feel gratification when they get what they want They feel gratification when they get what they want Such U&Gs can include to be amused, to find models to imitate, to see authority figures inflated or deflated Such U&Gs can include to be amused, to find models to imitate, to see authority figures inflated or deflated

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29 Social Learning Theory There’s no way a person can experience everything There’s no way a person can experience everything The media provide information about the world and society that the individual can’t experience alone The media provide information about the world and society that the individual can’t experience alone Can create a person’s reality: what things are, how to think, how to behave, how to interact with others, how to be in society Can create a person’s reality: what things are, how to think, how to behave, how to interact with others, how to be in society

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32 Cultivation Analysis Media messages tell people what the world is like and how people respond to what happens in the world Media messages tell people what the world is like and how people respond to what happens in the world An example is the mean world syndrome: heavy users of the media think the world is a more violent, dangerous place than it actually is because so many media messages contain violence (e.g., news, cop shows, dramas) An example is the mean world syndrome: heavy users of the media think the world is a more violent, dangerous place than it actually is because so many media messages contain violence (e.g., news, cop shows, dramas)

33 No one technique or theory has all the answers All hypotheses start with assumptions All hypotheses start with assumptions Scientific hypotheses start with assumptions about the world that can be empirically checked and falsified Scientific hypotheses start with assumptions about the world that can be empirically checked and falsified Social science hypotheses start with assumptions about people that usually can’t be empirically studied and are taken as axiomatic (they’re true because I think they’re true and can’t prove it one way or the other) Social science hypotheses start with assumptions about people that usually can’t be empirically studied and are taken as axiomatic (they’re true because I think they’re true and can’t prove it one way or the other)

34 All are ways to examine the media; none are the final answer

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