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Media Studies Exam...
Who is being represented?
In what way?
By whom? (links to institution)
Why is the subject being represented in this way? (links to ideology)
Is the representation fair and accurate?
What opportunities exist for self-representation by the subject?
Media Languages and Forms
What are the denotative and connotative levels of meaning?
What is the significance of the text's connotations?
What are the non-verbal structures of meaning in the text (e.g. gesture, facial
expression, positional communication, clothing, props etc)?
What is the significance of mise-en-scène/sets/settings?
What work is being done by the sound track/commentary/language of the text?
What are the dominant images and iconography, and what is their relevance to the
major themes of the text?
What sound and visual techniques are used to convey meaning (e.g. camera
positioning, editing; how are images and sounds combined to convey meaning)?
How is the narrative organised and structured?
How is the audience positioned in relation to the narrative?
How are characters delineated? What is their narrative function? How are heroes
and villains created?
What techniques of identification and alienation are employed?
What is the role of such features as sound, music, iconography, genre, mise-enscène,
editing etc. within the narrative?
What are the major themes of the narrative? What values/ideologies does it
To which genre does the text belong?
What are the major generic conventions within the text?
What are the major iconographic features of the text?
What are the major generic themes?
To what extent are the characters generically determined?
To what extent are the audience's generic expectations of the text fulfilled or
cheated by the text? Does the text conform to the characteristics of the genre, or
does it treat them playfully or ironically?
Does the text feature a star, a director, a writer etc who is strongly associated with
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What meanings and associations do they have?
What is the institutional source of the text?
In what ways has the text been influenced or shaped by the institution which
Is the source a public service or commercial institution? What difference does this
make to the text?
Who owns and controls the institution concerned and does this matter?
How has the text been distributed?
Media Values and Ideology
What are the major values, ideologies and assumptions underpinning the text or
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The Next Generation' (1987), was directly influenced by the popular rise of
therapy on the west coast of the USA in the 1980s.
What ideological framework underpinned the government in power at the time of
What impact might political pressure have had on media institutions (the press,
film studios etc.)
What political ideas, priorities, hopes and fears were dominant when the text was