Beyond Representational Correctness: Rethinking Criticism of Popular Media

Beyond Representational Correctness: Rethinking Criticism of Popular Media

by Edward Schiappa
ISBN-10:
0791474240
ISBN-13:
9780791474242
Pub. Date:
04/10/2008
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
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Overview

Beyond Representational Correctness: Rethinking Criticism of Popular Media

Argues that representational correctness can cause critics to miss the positive work that films and television shows can perform in reducing prejudice.

Representational correctness describes an implicit set of norms, including accuracy, purity, and innocence, that guide much of popular media criticism. In this provocative book, Edward Schiappa argues that representational correctness is unproductive, antagonistic to audience research, and typically disconnected from relevant social psychological or mass communication theories. Analyzing criticisms of such television shows as Will & Grace and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, Schiappa argues that the norms of representational correctness can cause critics to miss the positive work such shows perform in reducing prejudice. He contends that too many critics focus on isolated scenes or interactions that perpetuate a stereotype without considering the larger work that films and television shows can accomplish. Schiappa concludes that pop culture critics need to engage in more audience research, draw from relevant research in social psychology, praise positive representations and programming, and promote critical media literacy in both classroom and public pedagogy.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780791474242
Publisher: State University of New York Press
Publication date: 04/10/2008
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 227
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

PART I. Provocations

1. The Impossible Dream of Representational Correctness

2. The Argumentative Burdens of Audience Conjectures

3. The Phenomenal Text of Will & Grace: Revisiting the Text/Audience Divide

PART II. Interventions

4. Learning from Television: The Parasocial Contact Hypothesis

5. Context Matters: Antifeminism in Michael Crichton’s Disclosure

6. Quitting “Man”: Masculinity, Film Criticism, and Pedagogy

PART III. Conclusions

7. Beyond Representational Correctness: Five Suggestions

Notes
References
Index

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