G 3 2 5 : S e c t io n A : T h e o r e t ic a l P e r s p e c t iv e s in M e d ia U s in g Q u e s t i o n 1a )C o n v e n t io n s f r o mR e a l M e d ia T e x t s W h a t s k il l s d i d w e d e v e l o p in t h e u n d e r s t a n d in g o f t h e r e la t io n s h ip b e t w e e n t e x t a n d a u d ie n c e – i. e . T h e c r e a t io n o f m e a n in g in t e x t s .
Mediation – Encoding and Decoding, Open/Closed Texts You will need to investigate, across AS and A2, how you encoded meaning in texts to give a preferred meaning (Hall, 1980) or closed reading (Eco, 1981) for the audience based on your knowledge of the conventions of real media texts. This is going to involve an assessment of the micro and the macro in relation to audience readings.
Macro AnalysisPre-production: Ideology and Discourse (discussionor debate): Mediation of Ideas, Representation andDebates/Agenda– what the meanings/messages were.Production and Post Production: Form and Style:Postmodernism – Bricolage and Intertextuality,Medium and Genre, Narrative– how the meanings/messages were communicated.
Micro ElementsWhat choices did you make in terms of thefollowing in order to communicate yourmeaning to audience (mode of address andpersuasion)?Media Language:•Mise-en-Scene,•Camerawork,•Editing,•Sound
Macro: Ideology and Discourse, and AudienceReceptionStuart Hall (1980) – Dominant/Hegemonic reading.Preferred Meanings. Stuart Hall detailed that texts dohave preferred meanings, but the decoder will notalways necessarily read them as intended by theproducer as everyone has a different social/ culturalbackground. Texts that are meant to communicatehegemony will be encoded so that they are easilyinterpreted and understood by a mass audience.
Umberto Eco (1981) – Open and Closed Meaning.Texts aimed at large audiences (mass) will beencoded so that the majority of the audience canonly decode a very preferred meaning. This isknown as a closed text.An open text is one that has many meanings, or isdeliberately ambiguous, and can be understood indifferent ways by a number of different audiencemembers.
Roland Barthes (1979) – Anchorage and MythImages can be polysemic (can have multiplemeanings)and Barthes argued that the meaning ofimages can be pinned down to give a preferred meaningthrough the process of anchorage (text/music).Barthes also argued that all texts are encoded in such away to reinforce dominant, cultural ideologies or values.The way that a text is encoded makes the representationseem ‘natural’ or ‘common sense’. This is the concept of‘myth’.
Macro: Meanings and Messages across AS and A2courseworkTASK 1: What was the purpose of your texts at AS andA2?TASK 2: What were you trying to communicate to theaudience? What was the theme? What was the discourse(point of view/agenda debated) in your texts?TASK 3: Who was your target audience and what was themain mode of address?
Macro: Postmodernism, Genre, NarrativePostmodern Style: Irony, Parody, Pastiche, Bricolage,Intertextuality.Bricolage is the process of deliberately ‘borrowing’ or adaptingsigns or features from different styles or genres to create a newmixture of meanings (O’Sullivan et. al, 1998).Pastiche: Bog standard copying of conventions or can be done forbricolage effect. Whichever, this ultimately reinforces theirimportance in culture and society. Parody is a kind on pastichewhich makes fun of the subject.Intertextuality is the way in which media texts gain their meaningsby referring to other media texts that the producers assume thatthe reader/decoder will be familiar with and recognise (O’Sullivanet. al 1998).
Genre:Was it a hybrid? Did it have a sub-genre?What were the stereotypical elements of real media texts that youencoded into your video?Narrative:Is it an open / closed narrative? Did it have a beginning, middle andend or not (i.e. follow a classic narrative structure)? Linear or non-linear? Anti-narrative (deliberately doesn’t make any sense –surrealism)?NOW THINK BACK:There are additions to the ‘Creativity’ ppt now you have studiedpostmodernism for obvious reasons –this is centred aroundpostmodernism.
TASK 1: How did you pastiche or parody anyother media texts? (this includes bricolageand intertextuality).TASK 2: In relation to the above, can you bemore specific in terms of generic conventionsof your medium?TASK 3: In relation to the above, can you bemore specific in terms of narrative theory ofyour medium?
Micro Elements – advanced editing theoryEditing is its most literal sense is to remove unwantedelements.In terms of production : AS and A2 for your photographs: “aphotograph Barthes claimed, involved a mechanical processwhere the image – that which is denoted – is recorded, butthere is also an expressive, human and cultural process thatinvolves the selection and interpretation of such elements ascamera angles, framing, lighting and focus” (O’Sullivan,1998:33).In terms of post-production: You didn’t just decide whatelements to put in your images – it was what to leave out/takeout in order to create meaning.
Editing and Sergei Eisenstein (1920s)Sergei Eisenstein was a Marxist film maker and teacher fo filmtheory.Intellectual/Dialectical Montage – process of putting imagestogether so that a new meaning is created through thejuxtaposition. It identifies a struggle between opposites. It is likeputting an image of bankers quaffing wine next to an image of pigsin swill –it creates a meaning: bankers are like pigs (metaphorical).Vertical Montage - Create meaning through the juxtaposition ofan image with some other element (text (anchorage) or music).
Look back at the research into generic conventionsyou did at AS. What are the generic conventions of themedia text you created? Which real texts did youresearch and adopt the same conventions as? Can youapply any of the editing theories to your work at AS?Now do the same for the texts you created at A2.
“It is impossible to create a media product that is entirelyoriginal”. From your own experience discuss the extent towhich you used conventions of real media texts to produceyour media products and/or to the extent they allowed you tobe creative.Note down your thoughts to this question. Do you agree with thequote? Analyse the extent to which using real conventionshelped to enhance or hinder your creativity.“Creativity is always constrained by generic conventions”. Towhat extent did you adhere to or subvert generic conventionsin the creation of your media products.Note down your thought to this question. Do you agree with thequote? List the conventions you adhered to and subverted. Didthe generic conventions restrict your creativity?