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COMM 1F90 Oct 21.docx

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Communication Studies

COMM 1F90 Oct 21/2013 Main Points (Week 6)  Language constructs social reality  Language is not natural or neutral, it is a changing site of power struggles  Language and media are forms of social construction. Lecture Agenda  Language, news and objectivity  Production and distribution contexts  Approaches to audience analysis Representation and Social Position  There is no ‘unmediated’ reality  Representation: * to look like or resemble, *to stand in or speak for something or someone, *to present a second time, re-present.  Representations are shaped by social position of those producing them.  There is no one truth out there we all share on representations, it is all biased, the problem is the biased are not always explicit. Position is not always made clear so we don’t know how those representations are being taken.  ‘Bias’ is inherent in all representation. Can there be unbiased, objective, true representations of the world? It is to suggest that some things are truer then other things. Language in news: objectivity  Myth of objectivity: *news is reported by the omniscient writer, never in the first person, *news is always a neutral collection of facts.  But we know journalists write from a specific social position; they may select some facts, ignore or distort others (not deliberate).  ‘Bias’ may be unconscious and unintentional. Language in news: balance  Myth of balance: * News presents both sides of the argument. *Reports include co
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