Media Theories

  • Created by: laurenm
  • Created on: 27-12-16 22:00

Audience Theories

Consumption of the Media

Primary Media - Texts that demand close and concentrated attention from the audience. Such as a film shown in a cinema.

Secondary Media - Texts that provide a background for an audience who are often doing something else at the time. For example listening to the radio whilst driving.

Tertiary Media - Media which is consumed by the audience, who is unaware of there interaction with that media. For example advertisements whilst flicking through a magazine.  

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Audience Theories

Abercrombie & Longhurst

Audience involvement beyond the text allows boundaries between producer and consumer to become more fluid.

Shaun Moore

Media texts allow audiences to feel a part of an imagined community in which the consumers feel as though they have things in common with other imaginary audience memebers.

Hypodermic Needle Theory

The media 'injects' ideas into passive audiences.

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Audience Theories

Adorno vs. Fiske

Theodor Adorno

Culture is manufactured by what can be called the culture industry, where culture is treated as a commodity rather than a form of art or expression.

Audiences are passive, and so "Something is provided for all, so that none may escape"

John Fiske

The audience is the producer of meanings, and the media is the enabler.

"Popular culture is made by the people, not produced by the culture industry."

Fans of a product are so active that they do not merely consume the media, they use it to create their own artefacts and identities.

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Representation Theories

Alvarado Theory (1987)

There are four key themes in racial representations;

- Exotic     - Dangerous     - Pitied     - Humourous 


Limited inclusion or representation of a traditionally marginalised group, creating a false appearance of inclusivity as opposed to discrimination.

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Representation Theories

Forms of Representation

Cultural View 

  • An issue, concern or paranoia that a society or culture becomes worried or panicked over.

Reflective View

  • Doesn't reflect reality, it mediates it through media language and narrative to give a perspective.

Constructionist View

  • More complex; our knowledge of the world is constructed by representations, utilising media language and narrative.
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