What is the reception theory?
• Reception theory is a version of reader
response literary theory that emphasizes the
reader's reception of a literary text.
The Reception theory suggests:
• - When a producer constructs a text it is
encoded with a meaning or message that the
producer wishes to convey to the audience.
• In some instances audiences will correctly
decode the message or meaning and
understand what the producer was trying to
• In other cases the audiences will either reject
or fail to correctly understand the message.
• Stuart Hall identified three types of audience
readings (or decoding) of the text.
• DOMINANT OR PREFERRED
• Where the audience decodes the message as
the producer wants them to do and broadly
agrees with it.
• Where the audience accepts, rejects or refines
elements of the text in the light of previously
• Where the dominant meaning is recognised
but rejected for cultural, political or
1. The consumption of media texts has an
EFFECT or INFLUENCE upon the audience.
2. Audiences are PASSIVE and powerless to
prevent the influence.
3. The power lies with the MESSAGE of the text.