Shakuntala Banaji (ed)
Anthem Press (April 2010)
South Asian Media Cultures is a collection of essays that pulls together field-based audience and textual research in areas such as the politics of new media, contemporary television and film in India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and their audiences. Through a careful analysis of the various media cultures and practices from across South Asia, this collection addresses pertinent issues such as how discourses on gender, nationalism, ethnicity and class are being expressed by mainstream media texts across South Asia, and how different groups within the public discern meanings from such discourses.
With this collection, Banaji aims to reduce the reliance on commercial Hindi cinema ('Bollywood') for reference on the politics and history of South Asian Media. Instead, key current research and theoretical debate are presented in an accessible manner. They are organised around three clear themes: 'Audiences, meanings and social contexts', which focuses on the responses of particular social groups to specific media formats, ideas or genres; 'Media Discourse, Identity and Politics', which discusses the complex links between media representations and socio-political identities; and 'Alternative Producers: New Media, Politics and Civic Participation', which describes and assesses the various civic practices and possibilities opened up in South Asia by digital and mobile communications.
Shakuntala Banaji is a lecturer in Media and Communication at LSE.
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'An astute, engaging, and sophisticated volume for anyone interested in popular culture, globalization, and shifting social and political landscapes in South Asia.'
Sunaina Maira, Associate Professor of Asian American Studies, University of California, Davis
'The popular imagery versioning of South Asia has survived repeated critique. This is a timely collection that shows how this mechanism continues to do its work. Written by up-and-coming scholars who refract the usual gloss differently...a very welcome set of essays.'
Professor John Hutnyk, Academic Director, Centre for Cultural Studies, Goldsmiths University of London
'Through detailed qualitative analysis, this book provides fascinating - and occasionally disturbing insights into the intersecting cultural identities and ideologies that are at stake in this rapidly changing region.'
David Buckingham, Professor at the Institute of Education, University of London