Media Effects: Advances in Theory and Research

Media Effects: Advances in Theory and Research

Media Effects: Advances in Theory and Research

Media Effects: Advances in Theory and Research

Excerpt

The intellectual ancestor of this volume is Perspectives on Media Effects, which we were privileged to edit. Published in 1986 and reprinted several times, Perspectives not only met our goal of serving as a reference volume for scholars interested in the topic, it also received unanticipated widespread adoption as a textbook for classes in media effects. Certainly we are most grateful for this unanticipated "bonus"; however, when a book begins to be used as a course text, subtle changes in ownership occur. The book evolves from being "ours" (the editors' and contributors') to being "theirs" (the teachers' and students').

To a certain extent, that is what happened with Perspectives on Media Effects. We first noticed this a couple of years ago, when instructors began to engage us in conversations at conferences and ask, "Don't you think we should update the Perspectives book soon?" Or one of us would get a letter asking, "When is the new edition of Perspectives on Media Effects coming out? My students and I are going to need a new edition soon." Moreover, several correspondents felt that they had enough vested interest in the volume to suggest "improvements" like, "When you redo the media effects book, I hope you include a chapter on advertising effects" (or on political communication effects, or on the impact of public communication campaigns), or "When you come out . . .

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