Monday, March 29, 2010

Race and Ethnicity: Group 3

Using a talk show structure to create a dialogue, our podcast will explore African-American portrayals and stereotypes in advertising. We will delve into some of the methods involved in race-based advertising. This will cover different stereotypes used as well as some of the different media outlets that are utilized. We mention a made up ad that a few common stereotypes. We will include reasons that corporations use black racial stereotypes in commercial and print advertisements; the purchasing power of African Americans. This will include the benefits that companies gain through the use of stereotypes as well as their justification for targeting African-Americans specifically. In addition, we will look at the effect that African American race-based advertising has on society's view and relationship toward stereotypes. More specifically, we will highlight the affect on African-American society as well as society in general. The biggest message to take away from our podcast is that the impact of race-based advertising on society leads to an incorrect idea of African-Americans that reinforces existing stereotypes. The following articles were particularly helpful in our research.

Race and Ethnicity Group 2

In order to further inspect the issue of race representations in popular media, our group will take a look at how race is portrayed within children's television. According to Jebens’ article
“Nickelodeon: The First White Kids Network”, there is roughly a 12 to 1 ratio of white to African American character representation on Nickelodeon (5). While underrepresented in overall media, we will attempt to uncover stereotypes of African Americans by examining the children and teenage shows of Keenan and Kel from the Nickelodeon network and That’s so Raven from the Disney network. Further, we will explore the effect these stereotypes have on children’s perceptions of African Americans in the real world, and how these apply to the Postmodern popular culture theory. The never ending stereotyping of the African American race has been and still is very prevalent within our childrens daily television consumption and can range from their diet to their overall intelligence levels. Many theories could be used to examine the reasons for this profiling, but the postmodern train of thought might best explain African American’s portrayals for the easier identification with the “urban style”. Either way, all of the negative qualities shown throughout children’s media are certainly not lending to a correct or positive image of African Americans as individuals.

Race & Ethnicity- Group 1 Media Affiliations with Race Perception

We will address how certain media outlets frame race to the general public, specifically to children viewers and what this does for their own personal perception of color. We will illustrate certain examples such as Clark’s Doll Test and the film, “The Princess and the Frog” and what implications these examples have for how youth look at their own color and how media looks at color. The terms race and ethnicity will also be clarified to help further the understanding within this discussion and lastly, we will navigate through the media’s history of lacking diverse actors and how it adversely affects youth today. In this podcast, we will be delving into the idea that the media and entertainment industry alike lack diversity and fail to represent a realistic portrayal of particular races. The lack of color in TV, film, etc; has an effect on children that perpetuates prejudice ideals and is simply not representative of our population today. The evidence is clear, color is not abundant in commercials, movies and the like and children are seeing themselves differently because of this false representation, this hyperrealism. The media needs to take responsibility in properly representing all people in a medium that is consumed by the entire population, not just one race or ethnicity.

Gender Roles in "Sex and the City"

Our podcast will investigate the different ways in which the media can create and influence different stereotypes of women in popular culture. It not only perceives women as caregivers, but also as bread winners. The question we will be focusing on is “Do gender portrayals in the media create certain expectation and stereotypes within popular culture?” To answer this question we will be referencing the series of Sex and the City as our case study to guide us in researching four different modern day stereotypes of women, “the iron maiden, the sex object, the child, and the mother” (Macey 1), and how their roles in their relationships with the opposite sex play a significant role in their day to day lives. We will also be researching each of their takes on what defines their “stereotypical” version of what a relationship should be and how these definitions will compare their personality styles with the teachings of Marxism and Post-Structuralism.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Gender and Disney

Throughout Disney films, many characteristics are shown to influence the ideas men and women have towards relationships, love, and gender roles. This podcast will explore the differences between the romance perceptions of Disney fairy tale main characters within their gender and the reality that is romance in today’s society with men and woman. These characters and their actions in a number of Disney movies depict normalized roles that have an impact on how men and women view relationships. We will address the question “Do gender portrayals in the media create certain expectations and stereotypes within popular culture?” In order to answer the question of whether or not the media creates certain expectations and stereotypes within popular culture of gender portrayals, this podcast will explore different representations of Disney characters. We will also investigate these characters based on their gender and how these depictions provide a false representation of what women expect from men in real life relationships. Our group will look at the portrayals of Disney characters based on their gender and how this influences romance in society within the popular culture along with the male and female roles within society today.

Gender and Reality TV (Group 4)

This podcast explores how the media frames our perceptions of gender and gender stereotypes through reality TV. As an influential media source in society today, we feel that reality television has a large role in the shaping of the post-modern ideas of gender, focusing specifically on the female gender and perceived gender identity. We will address the question “How is female gender portrayed on reality TV, and how does the potential stereotyping affect the targeted audience?” We will do this by looking at how reality TV presents certain understandings of how gender is formed, and how reality TV uses this understanding to influence the perception and creation of a specific female gender identity. This will lead to an analysis of how the stereotypes presented on these shows change the ideas of idealized gender identity in the post-modern reality lived out in society today. We will explore this by looking at the reality TV series “Millionaire Matchmaker” and its portrayal of an idealized female gender role, and how this image affects its female viewership.

Culture Industries and the Globalization of Popular Culture (Globalization- Group 1)

The concept of culture industry, developed by Adorno and Horkheimer, seeks to define the products and processes of mass culture in a way that encourages consumption over reflection. This Marxist school of thought echoes the idea that mass culture is regurgitated in a way tailored to the masses with goals of obtaining a profit. Consumers who no longer have the ability to develop independent and autonomous art and are lacking the capacity to explicitly define high and low culture are fed a string of "products" generated in a formulaic fashion to promote mindless consumerism.

In this podcast we will be analyzing the factors that are utilized by culture industries to influence, create, and expand the globalization of popular culture within the global village.

We will begin by exploring how two particular American corporations, McDonald's and Coca-Cola, have influenced the globalization of popular culture by each becoming successfully integrated into global culture markets. By exploring these two culture industries' ability to adapt, immerse, and appeal to the mass, we attempt to illustrate not only that the concept of the culture industry is prevalent globally, but that the structure of these industries works as a medium for globalized popular culture. We will also focus on how the specific values of these brands are communicated and modified throughout the world, including an insight into the vast spread of "Americanization" facilitated by these global culture industries.