Arguing for a General Framework for Mass Media Scholarship

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SAGE Publications, 2009 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 394 pages
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“Arguing for a General Framework for Mass Media Scholarship challenges scholars and students to consider and reconsider what we know about media and how we think about media. As such, the book provides an important framework for thinking about knowledge—regardless of the discipline... The text provides all of the necessary tools to move the field forward in a way that will increase the rigor of the work being done and augment the overall profile of the discipline.”
–Dana Mastro, University of Arizona

In this groundbreaking book, W. James Potter presents an innovative perspective to media scholars and students who are frustrated with the fragmentation of research findings across so many journals, books, and fields. Arguing for a General Framework for Mass Media Scholarship presents a clear plan for a more efficient way to build knowledge about the mass media so that it can be better organized and made more useful.

Key Features

  • Conducts an in-depth analysis of mass media scholarship's four major facets of effects, content, audiences, and organizations
  • Presents a significant shift in conceptualizing media effects and ways research can be conducted to generate more useful knowledge about media influence
  • Develops "narrative line" as a tool to guide analyses about how content decisions are made by producers
  • Synthesizes a system of explanation about why audiences attend to certain messages and how individuals construct meaning from those messages
  • Incorporates an analysis of mass media organizations to provide greater context of understanding messages and their effects on individuals and macro units in society

"The book will play an important role in providing structure to a broad, fragmented discipline. I believe it will, at the very least, create important dialogues about what we now know/understand about areas of mass media, and where we should move as a discipline... This book is clearly a ‘call to arms’ for mass media scholars to ratchet up the quality of research (and what we know), to see the interconnections within and among strands of scholarship, and to move forward in a more efficient, organized manner. Professor Potter should be commended for this." —Roger Cooper, Ohio University

"This book is...that call to action that comes forward every few years, to wake us up and challenge our ways of doing things, not by being radical, but via synthesis... I’ve been waiting for several years for a book like this."
—Sahara Byrne, Cornell University

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About the author (2009)

W. James Potter is Professor of Communication at the University of California, Santa Barbara. A holder of a Ph.D. in Communication Theory and another in Instructional Systems, he has also taught at Western Michigan University, Florida State University, Indiana University, UCLA, and Stanford University. He is a former editor of the Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media. He has published numerous scholarly articles, book chapters, and 20 books, including Media Effects, The 11 Myths of Media Violence, Theory of Media Literacy, and Arguing for a General Framework for Mass Media Scholarship.

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