Media Education and the (Re)production of Culture

Media Education and the (Re)production of Culture

Media Education and the (Re)production of Culture

Media Education and the (Re)production of Culture

Synopsis

This book analyzes and critiques media education in the university and offers tools for developing a more critical direction. Media education should not be regarded as a job-track, but as an area of inquiry that integrates theory and practice. Media literacy and especially an awareness of the myths and misconceptions that mass media perpetrate should be part of the general education for all college students. Sholle and Denski present the premises of critical pedagogical theory as a framework for re-orienting media studies programs and the discussion of the role of the media in forming important social self-images.

Excerpt

Within the last decade, the debate over the meaning and purpose of education has occupied the center of political and social life in the United States. Dominated largely by an aggressive and ongoing attempt by various sectors of the Right, including "fundamentalists," nationalists, and political conservatives, the debate over educational policy has been organized around a set of values and practices that take as their paradigmatic model the laws and ideology of the market place and the imperatives of a newly emerging cultural traditionalism. in the first instance, schooling is being redefined through a corporate ideology which stresses the primacy of choice over community, competition over cooperation, and excellence over equity. At stake here is the imperative to organize public schooling around the related practices of competition, reprivatization, standardization, and individualism.

In the second instance, the New Right has waged a cultural war against schools as part of a wider attempt to contest the emergence of new public cultures and social movements that have begun to demand that schools take seriously the imperatives of living in a multiracial and multicultural democracy. the contours of this cultural offensive are evident in the call by the Right for standardized testing, the rejection of multiculturalism, and the development of curricula around what is euphemistically called a "common culture." in this perspective, the notion of a common culture serves as a referent to denounce any attempt by subordinate groups to challenge the narrow ideological and political parameters by which such a culture both defines and expresses itself. It is not too surprising that the theoretical and . . .

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