This course offers students a broad overview of the mass media (print, film, video, recorded music, radio, television, and the internet) with a particular focus on how these media impact our everyday lives. Students will develop critical frameworks for understanding how power operates across the media spheres of production, circulation, representation and reception. Attention is placed on how the social categories of race, class, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, age and nationality inform each of these media spheres. The course also considers how recent developments in digital technologies, media convergence and globalization have transformed our media culture.
Since this course is a broad examination of mass media and media theories, it allows students and instructors to examine various texts and themes, e.g., sports, the supernatural, travel. This term, our selected topic is recent stand-up comics and their participation in mass media. Specifically, we will watch, listen to, analyze, and construct argumentative projects about the output of stand-up comedians working in the industry from 1990-present.