Stuart Hall We will begin this part of the course with talking about Stuart Hall. Stuart is a scholar within cultural studies is from Jamaica and educated in England. The cultural studies we talk about are actually media studies, just re-named. These studies circled a lot around hegemony, system where people in power stay in power, and how media re-enforces that. Hall claims that we all buy in to the consumer-capitalist-ideology and says that he wants to provide power to the powerless through the media. He wants to cure the idea that capitalism is ideal, natural and eternal, in other words, Stuart Hall is a socialist. Social comparison theory Stuart calls it; the idea of comparing yourself to others as in “I am definitely better looking than that!” Few companies provides our news The idea, and fact is that only a few companies has control over the news-flow in today’s society which makes it very easy for someone to control what news we receive and thereby control us. But then why is us knowing the news so important? Well news are there to inform the citizens and the democratic process, but the companies does not care about this, they care about making money. Representation: What gives meaning in a special context: symbols, signs and the spoken word. Lastly, Stuart Hall wanted us to challenge the dominant narrative and look for what’s really there. George Gerbner Born Hungarian George advanced across the ocean and over to America where he served in the military. After this we find George going into the communication area when he starts to look into how the human is affected by violence. Gerbner mentions something he calls media cultivation which is based upon that media is like an inescapable religion and its main content is violence. So if we watch enough TV we might develop something referred to as: the mean world syndrome.
The mean world syndrome says that we might believe in all the violence we see on TV and therefor believe that it is happening all around us… we become paranoid. Heavy viewers might also overestimate the law-enforcement which on TV almost always wins. This might lead to the general mistrust of others. A heavy viewer watches 6 or more hours of TV a day. Agenda: Do we control the news or does the news control us? So let us talk about agenda: what you will talk about. The idea at first was that the news informs us and tells us what to think. But this theory is based on that the companies wants to make money and therefor broadcasts what we want to think about, and maybe not what we should think about. The most people in the US get their daily news from the local newspaper. Obviously, since they are local, these papers show mainly local stuff, but they also show international news and e.g. sports. The papers show what is most important to us. But, the thing is, cognitive dissonance theory tell us that from these news we will automatically select what we want to believe. But what the Agenda-theory says is that media selects it for you. Media knows what you will select and to make it as sufficient and moneysaving as possible they select on forehand what you are to take in. This theory also claims that this thing of you not having to select anything yourself leads to you being a worse voter and decision maker. So what we want to see we will get to see. But between these two things there is something called lag. Can we demonstrate a relationship between these two? Well, behavior is apparently 6% and news 30%. What this means however I do not know. (resonance) So how do we apply this agenda-model in real life? Well in elections they always pick out a demographic to use, this year it is the “wall-mart mom”. But how do we reach her? Well, we do this through the news flow. So what we need to find out is what the “wall-mart mom” cares about. (resonance) (postmodernism) So, what many sometimes seem to forget but what is very important to always remember is that news is never objective.