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Lecture 10

CMN2160 Lecture 10: Political Economy

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Patrick Mc Curdy

Political Economy Require empirical evidence for studying Political Economy Adam Smith: Classic theory the public nation System based on private property and individual decision making Markets are amoral Thomas Carlyle: conservative Argues free markets encourages individualism Dismal science Disagreed that all humans are equal and disagreed with the end of slavery Robert Owen: utopiansocialist vision Social intervention looking to create community Karl Marx: critique of capitalism Commodification Jevons: political economy as science Political economy of communication: How media and communication systems impact social and political power and whether they are for against democracy and selfgovernance Ex. patterns of ownership, concentration of ownership, issues of control and power Role of communication industries in modern society Role as individual industries Debate and the modern electronic public sphere US model: Chomsky, McChesney, Schiller, Noam Emphasises strategic use of power Issues of concentration and conglomeration Critique of advertising and its impact McChesney: the relationship between media and communication systems the broader social structures, critic Digital disconnect: commercial pressures on the internet have hurt its potential for democratization, critical of utopian view of the internet, anonymity Cultural studies approach critical political economy: European approach, Murdock, Golding, Garnham How the profit motive drives businesses and how the dominant ideology of business is shown in the structure and concentration of companies Focuses on questions of power and ideology, how economic, political and symbolic power interact in the sphere of culture, rooted in Marxist critique of capitalism What is the link between ideology and culture? Looks at media ownership, market regulation and market concentration How products and texts from the media sector are formed by government control, ownership patters, advertising, distribution and consumption Murdock and Golding: the process of ideological reproduction must be understood with analysis of the economic context within which it takes place
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