The Faces of Televisual Media: Teaching, Violence, Selling to Children

The Faces of Televisual Media: Teaching, Violence, Selling to Children

The Faces of Televisual Media: Teaching, Violence, Selling to Children

The Faces of Televisual Media: Teaching, Violence, Selling to Children

Synopsis

This collection offers original, state-of-the-art contributions from leading authorities in children's televisual media. International researchers from communication and psychology provide readers with ready access to current televisual research, trends, and policy-making/political climate issues pertaining to children. This second edition provides a current summary of studies on content, viewing patterns, comprehension, effects, and individual differences in instructional and educational programming, televisual entertainment and violence programming, and televisual advertising to children. This volume informs ongoing debates across a broad spectrum of current critical issues, and suggests avenues for future research. It is pertinent and provocative for the most sophisticated scholar in the field, as well as for students in areas of developmental or social psychology, communication, education, sociology, marketing, broadcasting and film, public policy, advertising, and medicine/pediatrics. It is also appropriate for courses in children, media, and society.

Excerpt

In February, 1977, a young, very naive social psychologist left Davidson, NC, on a Greyhound bus bound—eventually, as it turned out—for Boston. Having corresponded with Gerry Lesser at Harvard, the invitation had been extended to spend a spring sabbatical leave at the Center for Research in Children's Television. As a parent, this naive traveler had observed that something significant was happening in the family room when his son watched television, but this parent knew full well that—like the tip of an iceberg—there was much about this scene he didn't fathom nor understand. The long day's ride to Harvard was the beginning of a quest for understanding.

After the usual settling-in adjustments to Boston's version of “spring, ” finding a place to stay, learning the way around Cambridge, and thanking God that he hadn't brought a car, there followed an intense immersion in the work and research of the Center, Gerry's seminar, Center colloquia, and correspondence with key investigators in the field. What seemed readily apparent from the very outset was the degree to which this field and research area was multi-disciplinary. The work and knowledge base sprawled broadly across areas including communication, psychology, business, economics, education, health/nutrition, advertising, and the broadcast industry itself. There seemed both a place and a need for a work that would provide synthesis, and this felt need began germinating. Aimee Dorr, then at Harvard, was quite active in the field, and generously agreed to “sign on” for the challenge of creating—as well as contributing a chapter to—the proposed work. The project had Gerry's blessing and insights—along with his comment that editing a work of this magnitude was “an hellacious undertaking. ” So began the formative road toward Children and the Faces of Television: Teaching, Violence, Selling published in 1980 by Academic Press.

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