A cognitive psychology of mass communication

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L. Erlbaum Associates, 1994 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 313 pages
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Seldom does the content of a textbook become obsolete so fast as when it deals with the media. Intended to fill the gap in interdisciplinary approaches to mass communication, this book was written specifically from the perspective of a cognitive psychologist examining mass communication research. Most of the existing research has come from the field of communication or from psychologists with an essentially social psychological orientation. While these approaches are not neglected in this text, the emphasis is a cognitive one, focusing on the "knowledge" acquired from interacting with the media as well as the ramifications of this knowledge. The overriding theme of the book is that we construct cognitive representations of what the world is like through interacting with the media, especially television. The nature of this knowledge has far-reaching effects on our attitudes, behaviors, and world views in ways that are seldom adequately appreciated. Ideally, this book will sensitize readers to the psychology of the mass media, and how they connect with us as persons.
In response to adopter critiques, the material on communication theory has been greatly expanded in this second edition. Other material added is a completely updated and rewritten chapter on news, including an extensive section with information on the Persian Gulf War, the fall of the Soviet Union and the Tiananmen Square Massacre. There also is a far-reaching new section on family values.

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Contents

Mass Communication in Our Lives
1
Research and Theory in Mass Communication
13
Learning About People
40
Copyright

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About the author (1994)

Harris is professor of psychology at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, U.S.A. He has also been a Fulbright Professor in Brazil (1982) and Uruguay (1994).

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