Should Life Imitate Culture? “Since
the emergence of popular music, movies, television, and video games as influential mass media, the relationshipbetween make-believe stories and real-life imitation has drawn a great deal of attention.”
Media Effects Research• Attempts to
understand, explain, and predict the effects of mass media on individuals and society• Cultural studies focuses on how people make meaning, comprehend reality, articulate values, and arrange experiences through cultural symbols.
Conducting Media Effects Research1. identifying
the research problem2. reviewing existing research and theories related to the problem3. developing working hypotheses or predictions about what the study might find4. determining an appropriate method or research design5. collecting information or relevant data6. analyzing results to see if the hypotheses have been verified7. interpreting the implications of the study to determine whether they explain or predict the problem
Conducting Media Effects Research• The
Scientific Method - steps • Must be worded so that they are testable• Experimental design • Tests whether hypothesis is true• Survey research • Collecting and measuring data• Content analysis • Studies the messages of print and visual media
Cultural Approaches to Media Research•
Cultural Studies • Challenged mainstream media effects theory • Attempted to make everyday culture the centerpiece of media studies• Textual analysis • Close reading and interpretation of cultural messages• Audience studies • Subject being researched is the audience for the text• Political economy studies • Examines interconnections among economic interests, political power, and how that power is used
Cultural Studies’ Theoretical Perspectives• The
public sphere • A space for critical public debate • Advanced by German philosopher Jürgen Habermas • Society in England and France in late seventeenth century and eighteenth century created spaces (coffeehouses, pubs) for public discourse.
Media Research and Democracy• Academics
in media studies charged with increased specialization, use of jargon, have little practical application• Public intellectuals based on campuses must work to help carry on the conversations of society and culture, serving as models for how to participate in public life.