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mid term notes for MDSA01

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Media Studies
Ted Petit

This chapter begins with a discussion over theories of culture and ideology concentrating on how the ideologies of any given culture work to normalize and privilege certain perspectives on reality Then briefly outlines the historical development of the British Cultural studies tradition as a way of understanding the political underpinnings of the Cultural studies scholarship Finally we consider how ideologies influence the construction of media texts in relation to two historically relevant social issues in the Cultural studies tradition class and race pg124Cultural Theory an Overview pg124As a way of understanding social organization culture can be a problematic term Scholars disagree over the best way to conceptualize or understand the issue of culture In mulling over the idea of culture sociologist Michael Richardson provides this possible definition Culture is simply what human beings produce and the means by which we preserve what we have produced Culture is constructed multifaceted and uniquely human However it is helpful in formulating a specific definition of culture to consider the key ingredients or aspects that make a culture known The building blocks of culture fall into roughly three formsCulture is physicalex Artifacts any of the material aspects of daily life that posses widely shared meanings and manifest group definition to usCulture is socialAfter collecting and analyzing the artifacts the futuristic society studying us will attempt to decipher the social codes and rules that covered the creation of those artifactsCulture is attitudinalOur customs laws and traditions reflect particular ways of understanding the world Common Qualities that Define CultureCulture is collective Culture must be shared among a group of peopleCulture is rhetorical Culture functions symbolically Possessing culture is not natural or inherent to our biology as human beings but rather a result of our shared symbol systems that allow us to communicate meaning to one anotherCulture is historical It changes evolves fades and even disappears over time Culture us subjects to the whims and shifts of historyCulture is ideological The cultures we inhabit teach us to see the world in some ways and not in others The attitudespractices ad artifacts of our everyday lives encourage us asindividuals to interpret the world according to certain frameworks of culturally based knowledgeOverall culture can be defined as the collection of artifacts practices and beliefs of a particular group of people at a particular historical moment supported by symbolic systems and directed by
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