What Is Culture?
•Culture can be loosely defined as a set of
beliefs, traditions, and practices.
1
http://www.dailymotion....
Material vs. Nonmaterial CultureMaterial vs. Nonmaterial Culture• Material culture is everything that is a part of our con...
Which of the following are examples of material andWhich of the following are examples of material and
nonmaterial culture...
Cultural RelativismCultural Relativism• This the idea that we should recognize differences across
cultures without passing...
Where Do Stereotypes Come From?Where Do Stereotypes Come From?• Intentionally or unintentionally, subtly or overtly, the
m...
• The term was coined by AmericanYale professor,William Graham
Sumner
• Sumner defined ethnocentrism as:
"[The] view of th...
An individual with an ethnocentric view:An individual with an ethnocentric view:
• Identifies strongly with in-group ethni...
Cultural ScriptsCultural Scripts
• Cultural scripts are modes of behavior and
understanding that are not universal or natu...
Ethnocentrism occurs frequently here at home
Examples:
• Capitalism vs. Communism: for years, the US has fought
to end com...
More examples:
• Accents: Ethnocentric Americans may say that another
person has an accent, implying that the other person...
Extreme examples:
Americans are obese & uneducated
Canadians say ‘eh’
Rich people are snobby & members of country clubs...
SubculturesSubcultures
• A subculture is a group united by sets of concepts, values,
traits, and/or behavioral patterns th...
Values and NormsValues and Norms
• SocializationSocialization iis the process by which a person
internalizes the values, b...
Conception of SelfConception of Self
• IndividualistIndividualist:: Higher value placed on
self-reliance. Self-promotion i...
Achieved vs. Ascribed StatusAchieved vs. Ascribed Status
• People's status is based mainly on
their own achievements, incl...
Social RelationshipsSocial Relationships
• InformalInformal, egalitarian. People most
comfortable with their social
equals...
Harmony vs. "Truth"Harmony vs. "Truth"
• Willing to confront directly,confront directly,
criticize, discuss controversial
...
What Is Media?What Is Media?
• Media are any formats or vehicles that carry, present, or
communicate information – books, ...
Political Economy of the MediaPolitical Economy of the Media• Media ownership in the United States is in
the hands of six ...
Do Advertisers Control the Media?
Advertising is the primary
source of revenue for
newspapers, magazines,
television and r...
Do Advertisers Control the Media?
They must report the news
fairly and accurately to retain
public confidence
They must re...
Sociological Perspectives :Sociological Perspectives :
FunctionalismFunctionalism
The media gets people to go along with t...
Sociological Perspectives:Sociological Perspectives:
ConflictConflict
From a Marxist viewpoint, status-symbol chocolate ad...
Sociological Perspectives:Sociological Perspectives:
Symbolic InteractionismSymbolic Interactionism
• The values and norms...
• Millions of people all over the country watch sitcoms like Friends and
are influenced by the message they give out.The v...
Sut Jhally explains how we often ask the wrong questions
about advertising when we focus on individual effects. Instead,
h...
Social and Cultural Consequences
Does advertising
encourage materialism?
Does advertising
encourage materialism?
Does adve...
Advertising and Stereotyping
Portrayal of women to
reflect their changing role
in society
Portrayal of women to
reflect th...
What is your opinion of this ad?
Is this woman portrayed as a
sex object?
Is this woman portrayed as a
sex object?
Does th...
TestYour Knowledge
Groups such as the National Organization for
Women (NOW) are critical of advertising that:
A) Portrays ...
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Chapter 3 culture and media

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  • Culture includes things like: the way we speak, the food we eat, the way we dress. Also, it is important to note that culture is not biological. Rather, it is passed down from one generation to the next through communication – we learn culture from our families and other institutions in society.
  • Items in a culture do not have meaning inherently – we assign meaning to them. For example, in American culture, we know that a chair is for sitting in. But could it not also be used as a step ladder, or a weapon, or a decoration? We have assigned meaning to it, and that makes it valuable in a certain way in our culture. Nonmaterial culture works in a similar way. As a society, we determine the values, beliefs, behaviors, and social norms that we find appropriate and acceptable. Culture includes language, the meanings we assign to words, and concepts such as class, inequality, and ownership. Nonmaterial culture can take the form of ideology, which is a system of concepts and relationships that includes an understanding of cause and effect.
  • Answer: D
  • As previously mentioned, we take great caution not to judge other cultures as being inferior or superior. This is one of the biggest benefits of utilizing our sociological imagination – we have the ability to step back from our own lives and examine situations without bias.
  • Sometimes, in the process, the media distract people’s attention from foundational issues or tensions that need to be addressed. The media is sometimes blamed for creating a “false consciousness,” or allowing people to become distracted and disenfranchised, believing that social issues aren’t that important or that there is nothing they can do to help anyway.
  • Gender roles, which we will talk about when we get to Chapter 8, are examples of cultural scripts. Acting masculine or femininely may seem “natural,” but these roles are strongly influenced by culture and society, and these behaviors aren’t universal – roles may be very different for men and women in other cultures or societies.
  • Sometimes members of subcultures are marginalized from society, but oftentimes, these individuals interact with other members of society without notice – they just have characteristics that make them different from members of the larger, dominant culture. Some examples could be people who listen to punk music, people with a naval piercing, or vegetarians. Generally, these individuals still work, go to school, go grocery shopping, and interact normally with individuals in the dominant culture, without incident.
  • We begin learning values and norms at an early age – likely before we are even able to talk! This happens through the process of socialization. Our family socializes us, then schools and teachers, friends, religion, the media, and others continue to socialize us through the course of our lives.
  • Many critics of the media often argue that not all aspects or perspectives are equally disseminated or valued in the media. Instead, only the dominant culture is reinforced through the media. Granted, the media’s power is not an example of domination – it doesn’t force anyone to do or believe anything. Rather, according to critics, the media gets people to go along with the ideas presented because it seems to portray the status quo or the natural order of things.
  • These companies are often called media conglomerates, because they control, not only television, but also websites, magazines, newspapers, radio stations, and more. If so much of our information is coming from so few sources, are we comfortable in the belief that we are getting fair and accurate information?
  • Relation to text This slide relates to material on pp. 756-757 of the text. Summary Overview This slide shows the arguments supporting the position that advertisers have control over the media. These include: Advertising is the primary source of revenue for newspapers, magazines, television, and radio Media’s dependence on advertising for revenue makes them vulnerable to control by advertisers Advertisers may exert control over the media by biasing editorial content, limiting coverage of certain issues, or influencing program content Use of this slide This slide can be used to discuss the position that advertisers control the media because a large part of their revenue is generated from advertising.
  • Relation to text This slide relates to material on pp. 757-758 of the text. Summary Overview This slide shows arguments against the position that advertisers do have control over the media. These include: They must report the news fairly and accurately to retain public confidence Advertisers need the media more than the media needs any one advertiser The media maintains separation between news and business departments. This separation is often referred to as “The Wall.” Use of this slide This slide can be used to discuss the reasons why advertisers do not control or have undue influence over the media despite the financial dependence that newspapers, magazines, and radio and television stations have on advertising.
  • Media is exploitive. The values and norms of the “upper class” are promoted by the media. Not all aspects or perspectives are equally disseminated or valued in the media. Instead, only the dominant culture is reinforced through the media.
  • Relation to text This slide relates to material on pp. 749-751 8 of the text. Summary Overview This slide shows some of the social and cultural questions related to advertising. Does advertising make people buy things they don’t need? Pro advertising Advertising provides essential information It is difficult to separate the desirable advertising from the undesirable Consumers are free to choose Critics of advertising Information advertising is acceptable, but persuasive advertising is unacceptable Persuasive advertising fosters discontent among consumers Does advertising encourage materialism? Pro advertising Materialism is an acceptable part of the Protestant ethic, which stresses hard work and individual effort Acquisition of material possessions has positive economic impact Critics of advertising Advertisers seeks to create needs Surrounds consumers with images of the good life and suggest material possessions will lead to happiness Material possessions will lead to greater social acceptance Is advertising just a reflection of society? Some argue that advertising is merely a visible manifestation, good and bad, of the American way of life. Others feel that advertising reflects cultural values on a selective basis, echoing and reinforcing certain attitudes, behaviors, and values more frequently than others. Use of this slide This slide can be used to discuss the social and cultural consequences of advertising and arguments both for and against advertising.
  • Relation to text This slide relates to material on pp. 751-756 of the text. Summary Overview Advertising is criticized for portraying various gender and ethnic groups in ways that are unflattering. Critics also argue advertising does not stay contemporary and reflect the changing roles of women. Despite the recognition that advertisers must be sensitive to the portrayal of specific types of people, ad agencies are finding it increasingly difficult not to offend some segment of the public. This slide shows the various forms of stereotyping that advertising is often accused of creating and perpetuating. These include: Gender stereotyping Portrayal of women to reflect their changing role in society Portrayal of women as sex objects Ethnic stereotyping/representation of minorities Gay-specific ads Use of this slide This slide can be used to discuss stereotyping in advertising.
  • Relation to text This slide relates to material on pp. 742-743, 751-753 and Exhibit 22-8 of the text. Summary Overview Consider this ad for Airwalk shoes and how it might be viewed by consumers. Is this woman portrayed as a sex object? Does this ad contain cues that are sexually suggestive? Does this ad present an image of sexual submission? This ad was criticized by some women’s groups who argued that it shows a submissive and sexually available woman. The critics argued that the ad contains a number of symbolic cues that are sexually suggestive and combine to reinforce an image of the woman’s sexual submission to a man. These cues include the heart shaped box, indicating love, the color red, which symbolizes passion, and the heavy lipstick, which is sexually suggestive, as is the slinky red dress. Use of this slide Use this slide to prompt a discussion about the sexual nature of some ads. You might ask your students if they agree with this assessment of the ad.
  • Answer: E
  • Chapter 3 culture and media

    1. 1. What Is Culture? •Culture can be loosely defined as a set of beliefs, traditions, and practices. 1 http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x8m5d0_everything-is-amazing-and-nobody-i_fun Louis CK “Everything is amazing and nobody is happy!
    2. 2. Material vs. Nonmaterial CultureMaterial vs. Nonmaterial Culture• Material culture is everything that is a part of our constructed environment, such as music, books, fashion, and monuments. • Nonmaterial culture encompasses values, beliefs, behaviors, and social norms.
    3. 3. Which of the following are examples of material andWhich of the following are examples of material and nonmaterial culture?nonmaterial culture? 3
    4. 4. Cultural RelativismCultural Relativism• This the idea that we should recognize differences across cultures without passing judgment on or assigning value to those differences. • Our sociological imagination should allow us to step back from our lives and examine situations without bias.
    5. 5. Where Do Stereotypes Come From?Where Do Stereotypes Come From?• Intentionally or unintentionally, subtly or overtly, the media can create or reinforce ethnic, racial, gender, religious, and other stereotypes. • Ethnocentrism: the belief that our culture is superior to others and the tendency to view all other cultures from the perspective of our own. 5
    6. 6. • The term was coined by AmericanYale professor,William Graham Sumner • Sumner defined ethnocentrism as: "[The] view of things in which one´s"[The] view of things in which one´s group is the center of everything, andgroup is the center of everything, and others are scaled and rated with referenceothers are scaled and rated with reference to it. Each group nourishes its own prideto it. Each group nourishes its own pride and vanity, boasts itself superior, exaltsand vanity, boasts itself superior, exalts its own divinities and looks withits own divinities and looks with contempt on outsiders."contempt on outsiders." Ethnocentrism is a very “Anything you can do, we can do it better” point of view concerning ethnicity. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSJFBeVFtak
    7. 7. An individual with an ethnocentric view:An individual with an ethnocentric view: • Identifies strongly with in-group ethnicity,Identifies strongly with in-group ethnicity, culture, etc.culture, etc. • Feels proud, vain, superior about in-groupFeels proud, vain, superior about in-group • Views economic, political, social events fromViews economic, political, social events from the point of their in-groupthe point of their in-group • Defines their culture elements as ‘correct’ &Defines their culture elements as ‘correct’ & ‘natural’‘natural’ • Thinks in-group norms are universalThinks in-group norms are universal • Rejects out-group ethnicities, cultures, etc.Rejects out-group ethnicities, cultures, etc. • Feels like other ethnicities & cultures areFeels like other ethnicities & cultures are inferiorinferior • Xenophobia: a fear or hatred of persons of aXenophobia: a fear or hatred of persons of a different race, or different ethnic or nationaldifferent race, or different ethnic or national originorigin • Defines other culture’s elements as ‘incorrect’ &Defines other culture’s elements as ‘incorrect’ & ‘unnatural’‘unnatural’
    8. 8. Cultural ScriptsCultural Scripts • Cultural scripts are modes of behavior and understanding that are not universal or natural, but that may strongly shape beliefs or concepts held by a society.
    9. 9. Ethnocentrism occurs frequently here at home Examples: • Capitalism vs. Communism: for years, the US has fought to end communism because they believe capitalism trumps all • Driving: Ethnocentric Americans say that driving on the left side of the road is the ‘wrong side’ & that the right side is the ‘correct side’ American Ethnocentrism
    10. 10. More examples: • Accents: Ethnocentric Americans may say that another person has an accent, implying that the other person speaks different, strange, & un-American • Legal Age of Alcohol Consumption: the US has a higher drinking age of most other countries & does not emulate other countries by lowering the legal age because they think it is the best age for a person to be able to start consuming alcohol American Ethnocentrism
    11. 11. Extreme examples: Americans are obese & uneducated Canadians say ‘eh’ Rich people are snobby & members of country clubs Asians are geniuses & bad drivers English people drink tea & have bad teeth Women are bad drivers & emotional Men are strong & smarter than women Ethnocentric Stereotypes
    12. 12. SubculturesSubcultures • A subculture is a group united by sets of concepts, values, traits, and/or behavioral patterns that distinguish it from others within the same culture or society.
    13. 13. Values and NormsValues and Norms • SocializationSocialization iis the process by which a person internalizes the values, beliefs, and norms of society and learns to function as a member of that society. ValuesValues are our beliefs NormsNorms are how values tell us to act What are some American Values?
    14. 14. Conception of SelfConception of Self • IndividualistIndividualist:: Higher value placed on self-reliance. Self-promotion is more accepted. High value placed on "freedom" from externally imposed constraints. • CollectivistCollectivist:: Higher value placed on group cooperation and individual modesty.
    15. 15. Achieved vs. Ascribed StatusAchieved vs. Ascribed Status • People's status is based mainly on their own achievements, including education obtained and level of success realized in their line of work. • Traditionally, a person's status in the society was based importantly on inherited characteristics such as age, gender, and family. This is changing. 15
    16. 16. Social RelationshipsSocial Relationships • InformalInformal, egalitarian. People most comfortable with their social equals; importance of social rankings minimized. • FormalFormal, hierarchical. People most comfortable in the presence of a hierarchy in which they know their position and the customs/rules for behavior in the situation. 16
    17. 17. Harmony vs. "Truth"Harmony vs. "Truth" • Willing to confront directly,confront directly, criticize, discuss controversial topics, press personal opinions about what they consider "the truth. Little concern with "face." • Avoid direct confrontationAvoid direct confrontation, open criticism, and controversial topics. Concern maintaining harmony and with "face." 17
    18. 18. What Is Media?What Is Media? • Media are any formats or vehicles that carry, present, or communicate information – books, posters,Web pages, clay tablets, and radio. • Mass media refers to any form of media that reaches the mass of the people. 18
    19. 19. Political Economy of the MediaPolitical Economy of the Media• Media ownership in the United States is in the hands of six companies. • Those companies affect the information and messages communicated to the public.
    20. 20. Do Advertisers Control the Media? Advertising is the primary source of revenue for newspapers, magazines, television and radio Advertising is the primary source of revenue for newspapers, magazines, television and radio Advertisers may exert control over the media by biasing editorial content, limiting coverage of certain issues, or influencing program content Advertisers may exert control over the media by biasing editorial content, limiting coverage of certain issues, or influencing program content Media’s dependence on advertising for revenue makes them vulnerable to control by advertisers Media’s dependence on advertising for revenue makes them vulnerable to control by advertisers
    21. 21. Do Advertisers Control the Media? They must report the news fairly and accurately to retain public confidence They must report the news fairly and accurately to retain public confidence Advertisers need the media more than the media need any one advertiser Advertisers need the media more than the media need any one advertiser Media maintain separation between news and business departments “The Wall” Media maintain separation between news and business departments “The Wall”
    22. 22. Sociological Perspectives :Sociological Perspectives : FunctionalismFunctionalism The media gets people to go along with the ideas presented because it seems to portray the status quo or the natural order of thingsseems to portray the status quo or the natural order of things. In doing so, it helps reinforce values and norms. Transmission of the social heritage refers to the ability of the media to communicate values, norms, and styles across time and between groups. A television network might air a violent police drama with the aim of entertaining, but the actual function served for the audience might be learning how toactual function served for the audience might be learning how to solve conflicts.solve conflicts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPKMaNL6kJQ
    23. 23. Sociological Perspectives:Sociological Perspectives: ConflictConflict From a Marxist viewpoint, status-symbol chocolate advertising exemplifies how “commodity fetishism” helps maintain capitalism. Such advertising legitimizes the elite class by reinforcing the image of upper-class superiority and by presenting the luxurious lifestyle as something to aspire to. 23 Godiva promotes the idea that consumers of their chocolates are somehow “higher class” and more “tasteful” than people who do not consume them.  As a result, their chocolates have a higher exchange value than the everyday, $1 chocolates meant for middle and lower-class consumers. Can you say “Starbucks?”
    24. 24. Sociological Perspectives:Sociological Perspectives: Symbolic InteractionismSymbolic Interactionism • The values and norms change moment to moment based on our mutual day- to-day interactions with each other. • The media uses symbols of happiness and success to attempt to affect an abstract social structure. For instance, companies no longer try to sell their products – they instead try to sell a lifestyle. • Customers believe that if they acquire the product, their lifestyle will change. 24 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jiKxeXzv-wM
    25. 25. • Millions of people all over the country watch sitcoms like Friends and are influenced by the message they give out.The various scenarios within in Friends can be seen as a mark of the issues within a certain time period. David Pierson states, "The sitcom can be understood asThe sitcom can be understood as a historical and cultural document for observing and scrutinizinga historical and cultural document for observing and scrutinizing dominant social manners at any particular time period, especiallydominant social manners at any particular time period, especially those relating to gender, social class, and relationshipsthose relating to gender, social class, and relationships" (Pierson 45). Friends will be remembered as a representation of the lives of average Americans and the stereotypes held within that time period. 25
    26. 26. Sut Jhally explains how we often ask the wrong questions about advertising when we focus on individual effects. Instead, he argues that we need to understand advertising’s collective impact on our culture. • http://www.wwnorton.com/colleg e/soc/you-may-ask- yourself2/ch/03/dvd.aspx 26 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bdpucXyZNCM
    27. 27. Social and Cultural Consequences Does advertising encourage materialism? Does advertising encourage materialism? Does advertising make people buy things they don’t need? Does advertising make people buy things they don’t need? Is advertising just a reflection of society? Is advertising just a reflection of society?
    28. 28. Advertising and Stereotyping Portrayal of women to reflect their changing role in society Portrayal of women to reflect their changing role in society Portrayal of women as sex objects Portrayal of women as sex objects Ethnic stereotyping/ representation Ethnic stereotyping/ representation Gender stereotyping Gender stereotyping Sexual orientation Sexual orientation Criticisms of Advertising With Regard to Stereotyping Criticisms of Advertising With Regard to Stereotyping
    29. 29. What is your opinion of this ad? Is this woman portrayed as a sex object? Is this woman portrayed as a sex object? Does this ad contain cues that are sexually suggestive? Does this ad contain cues that are sexually suggestive? Does this ad present an image of sexual submissiveness? Does this ad present an image of sexual submissiveness?
    30. 30. TestYour Knowledge Groups such as the National Organization for Women (NOW) are critical of advertising that: A) Portrays women in traditional sexist roles B) Contributes to violence against women C) Is insulting to women D) Stereotypes women E) Does any of the above
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