Coursework – why research is so important MS3


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Coursework – why research is so important MS3

  1. 1. MS3: Media Investigation Coursework – why research is so important Your essay is going to answer a question, consider an issue or tests a hypothesis. The essay should have a mixture of your analysis, research from other sources, with the opinions of other academics and writers. You should apply their findings and theories to the texts you are analysing. A starting point of your research should be the key concepts. Your question should focus on one of these: Ø Genre Ø Narrative Ø Representation So if you are studying representations of teenagers, a good starting point is to identify what representation as a concept is. Then you should consider what representations? Are they of a particular gender? So what have academics considered are important about females and stereotypes? Are there any representational quotes specifically about female teenagers? Then focus your search on specifics – look up academic writings about teenagers – find quotes and reviews about the programmes you are using as your case studies. What theories are there in the academic textbooks? Can you apply them to your texts? There are lots of journals and articles through the Athens database, available via First Class. If you are choosing a TV series, you need to choose 1 or 2 specific episodes which have scenes and characters relevant to your question. Your analysis should be focused and specific. Your paragraphs should include the views of academics, your analysis and application of theories. Your essay may agree with your initial question, offer alternative viewpoints or agree with established viewpoints. You don’t have to come up with a definitive answer – just have a debate around the issues, offering different interpretations. Below is an extract from an essay which uses academic writing and the student’s own analysis: Mulvey’s Male Gaze Theory (1974) suggest that women are filmed from a male perspective, and are presented as being passive and objectified. She argues that the position of a woman on screen is fixed and seen purely through the eyes of a man, regardless of the sex of the audience. ‘The female body is displayed and filmed for the male gaze in order to provide erotic pleasure.’ (Mulvey, 2003, pg 85). To show the progression of the female action hero, I will contrast Mulvey’s theory to Clover, who suggests the presence of a ‘permeable membrane’; the idea that it is possible to shift gender of the audience through a portrayal on screen. Established academic view. Direct quote which establishes the viewpoint Here There is a second academic view. The student ells us she is going to compare the theories and use hem in her analysis.
  2. 2. MS3: Media Investigation This is how the student analyses the text, Lara Croft. So here the student is arguing that the stereotypes of female gender are changing and not as rigid as first thought. To get top marks – you need to show logical and coherent analysis, research and arguments. Lara Croft (Tomb Raider, Simon West, 2001) is played by Angelina Jolie. Through exaggerated features such as hips, breasts and lips she demonstrates the hyperbolic nature of the female physique that is used in relation to female action heroes. To avoid her becoming merely sexualized and passive, she is presented as the active lead role, and therefore is seen from a different perspective, other that just an object of sex. The idea that women can be desexualized when placed into an active role, is one of the main contributors to the shift in female representation. By taking on traditionally masculine roles in film, women have begun to show that portrayals of gender are not set in stone. Judith Butler suggests stereotypes of gender are coded and learned. Student’s own analysis Link to an established academic view from a textbook