Mass Media and Mass Culture

Mass Media and Mass Culture

Mass Media and Mass Culture

Mass Media and Mass Culture

Excerpt

Great Issues Lecture: Mass Media and Mass Culture

at The Hopkins Center, Dartmouth College November 26, 1962

Frank Stanton, President Columbia Broadcasting System

The Great Issues Course was inaugurated by President John Sloan Dickey in 1947. It is based on a series of lectures to Dartmouth seniors given weekly through the college year by distinguished visitors to the campus.

A "great" issue is one considered to have moral core, historical depth, particular significance for the present and a probable projection into the future. The subject of your deliberations this week is highly appropriate to the chapter in Dartmouth's history marked by the opening of this promising Center. It is one of the most hopeful signs of our times, I think, that academic institutions all over America are becoming more and more concerned with the arts, both visual and performing. Certainly this enlarged concern, of which this building is a characteristic symbol, is central to any deeper understanding of American culture and of the culture of the twentieth century.

But if you have been apt in your choice of a subject, I am afraid that you have not been unique. There is a great stir going on everywhere about what feature writers like to call the "cultural explosion" -- an expression that leaves something to be desired in view of the dictionary definitions of "explosion." Financial pages have probed the commercial implications of increased cultural activity. Philosophers have explored the moral aspects in learned and spirited seminars. Sociologists,
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