In order to explore the question "What factors influence the globalization of popular culture?" our group has chosen to look at the role celebrities play in creating and influencing notions of the popular culture. We will investigate how celebrity culture creates a base of cultural values that get circulated within popular culture. We will also look at the role the media plays in promoting and framing celebrity beliefs and agendas and how these actions are viewed not only in the USA but internationally.
Eric Rothbuhler (2005). The church of the cult of the individual. In E. W. Rothenbuhler & M. Coman (Eds.), Media Anthropology, (pp. 91-100). Newbury Park, CA:Sage.
In this article Rothenbuhler raises the idea of “the cult of the individual as the religion of modern society” and celebrities as essential elements of today’s environment. He states that, “the media provide the religious education of the cult of the individual” (p. 17) and because the media provides all the necessary means for practice, the public’s access to media is crucial. This article helps frame our understanding of the role celebrities play in popular culture
Charlotte Ryan, Michael Anastario, & Karen Jefferys, (1998). Start Small, Build Big: Negotiating Opportunities in Media Markets. Mobilization: An International Quarterly, 10 (1) pp. 111-128. Retrieved November 21, 2008, from http://www.mrap.info/docs/start_small_build_big.pdf
This article discusses factors which influence success of various social movements and the role the media play in this. As the article states, “Social movements and their participating collective actors start with seemingly impossible goals to create macro shifts in social structures. By organizing strategically with support from agency laden institutions, collective actors gain strength over time despite pressure from existing structural arrangements, they find opportunities and turn them into bigger ones” (p. 125). This article will help us reflect on how the media shape popular values and also how celebrities must interact with the media in order to communicate their message.
Philip Brown & Jessica Minty (2008). Media Coverage and Charitable Giving after the 2004 Tsunami. Southern Economic Journal, 75, pp. 9-25. Retrieved November 14, 2008, from http://www.wdi.umich.edu/files/Publications/WorkingPapers/wp855.pdf
In this article the resulting charitable support after the tragedy in Thailand is detailed and explained and the role celebrities play in raising awareness about the situation. According to Brown and Minty, “media coverage of humanitarian crisis is widely believed to influence charitable giving” (p. 21) and increase the level of support the cause achieves. This article describes how media serve as important tools for framing tragedy and how spokespersons can influence people's perception and action in such events.