Analyzing Media: Communication Technologies as Symbolic and Cognitive Systems

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Guilford Publications, Sep 13, 1996 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 228 pages
For the past 25 years, critics of communication have focused on the content and form of verbal and nonverbal communication, while for the most part neglecting what traditionally has been considered a technical rather than a critical issue--the impact of how messages are produced or formatted in the various media. Topics such as the sexual and violent content of television and films, the meaning of pornography, and the persuasive efforts of advertisers largely have been examined with the use of social science methodologies that ignore the behavioral and message-generating implications of specific media systems themselves. Filling a significant void in the literature, this volume eschews the notion of communication technologies as neutral conduits, and instead depicts them as active and creative determinants of meaning. In doing so, it offers an illuminating examination of the dynamic relationships among communication, cognition, and social organization.

Winner of the Eastern Communication Association's Everett Lee Hunt Award for Outstanding Scholarship

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About the author (1996)

James W. Chesebro, Ph.D., is Professor in the Department of Communication at Indiana State University, Terre Haute. A past President of the Speech Communication Association, he also has served as Director of Educational Services in the Association's National Office in Annandale, Virginia, as Chair of its Publications Board, and as a member of its Administrative Committee and Legislative Council. Widely published, he was the Editor of Communication Quarterly from 1985 through 1987, and his articles have appeared in such publications as the Quarterly Journal of Speech, Communication Monographs, Communication Education, Text and Performance Quarterly, and Critical Studies in Mass Communication. He has also received a number of awards, including the Speech Communication Association's "Golden Anniversary Award" for the outstanding monograph of the year, the "Everett Lee Hunt Scholarship Award," and the "Distinguished Service Award" from the Eastern Communication Association.