Communication, Media & Politics in the Anthropocene

Shifting Ideas, Shifting Opinion, Shifting Policy
Media Theory & Effects

Durable Paradigms? Cultivation and Spiral of Silence Research in the Digital Age

As publics are increasingly celebrated as both consumers and co-creators of media, many have questioned how influential traditional media institutions may still be in shaping public opinion and social consensus. Yet for the moment, the trend towards digital distribution of media content is still dominated by traditional news and entertainment producers with digital channels and...

Dark Continent or Vibrant Emerging Economy? Framing and the Global Image of African Countries

As African countries such as Ethiopia seek to re-mold their global image as vibrant emerging economies, key to their success will be understanding research as it relates to the longstanding cultural associations and cognitive short cuts that still shape Western perceptions of the continent and its people. In my Doctoral seminar this semester on Advanced Media...

Cultivation and the Spiral of Silence: Media Theories Explaining the Mainstreaming of Societal Viewpoints

  George Gerbner and Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann devised paradigmatic theories explaining the media’s ability to set the boundaries for conventional and mainstream thinking in society.  Yet each arrived at their explanations from very different ideological vantage points, world views shaped in part by their coming of age as young adults during War World II and then...

Social Problems Everywhere and No Attention to Spare

-Guest post by Audrey Payne, American University graduate student.  Reposted from Big Think’s Age of Engagement, Nov. 29, 2011. It seems like there are so many problems discussed in the media every day- public health, the environment, the economy, political protests…. Have you ever stopped to wonder why? Even more importantly, why do some issues tend...