Media Mythologies

Media Mythologies

Media Mythologies

Media Mythologies

Synopsis

An examination of the media and how it operates in Australia. The history of human communication is outlined and an exploration of contemporary media ownership and media criticism is presented. The author, a communications lecturer at Charles Sturt University, has worked for various media organisations including the ABC, SBS TV,'The Australian' and 60 Minutes.

Excerpt

Media studies are a relatively late arrival on Australian higher education campuses and, as such, have not yet found a comfortable home. They are taught in a variety of forms under a range of faculties and disciplines. On some campuses the emphasis is on media texts and the course of study is delivered, side by side with Shakespeare and Dickens, by traditional English departments. On other campuses it is the school of sociology that offers courses on mass media, usually with an emphasis on media organisations and practices. Courses in communication theory, normally associated with business communication programs, often include studies of media methods and effects. On some campuses the film and drama departments include focused studies of mass media products in their courses. Some political science departments look at the mass media as part of their investigation into political organisations. Media studies courses are most likely to be found in the journalism schools that have been established at many universities during the past two decades. And in the technical and further education sector, media studies are often included in courses on business communication, public relations and advertising.

All these separate streams of media studies have their own separate contexts and are usually based on different approaches to studying the mass media, generally following the broad philosophical objectives of the disciplines in which they are based. They have much in common but also many divergent themes. The mass media represent such a broad arena of human endeavour, creativity and social formation that they provide ample territory for several academic fields of learning.

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