The course is organised into two thematic units.
1. An accessible introduction to key issues and tensions among prominent strands of communication research, focusing on media institutions, texts and audiences and texts in context. As well as introducing students to interesting theoretical and research perspectives, this section of the course will encourage an examination of the intersection of the themes of media, globalisation and citizenship. For instance, we will look at how media – such as films, advertisements and websites – represent issues such as poverty, migration, gender and nationalism. We will also ask questions about the ways in which different audiences respond to these representations.
2. A more focused examination of the ways in which organisations, civic groups, politicians and individuals based in cities or ‘imagined communities’ across the globe, utilise and participate in media to negotiate access to power and identity. We examine prominent elements of urban culture, such as technological, music and game cultures, which shape and mediate processes of identity formation at urban, national and transnational levels, while at the same time examining the use of old and new media in political campaigns.