What Media Classes Really Want to Discuss
A Student Guide
By Greg Smith
Routledge – 2011 – 158 pages
You probably already have a clear idea of what a "discussion guide for students" is: a series of not-very-interesting questions at the end of a textbook chapter. Instead of triggering thought-provoking class discussion, all too often these guides are time-consuming and ineffective.
This is not that kind of discussion guide.
What Media Classes Really Want To Discuss focuses on topics that introductory textbooks generally ignore, although they are prominent in students’ minds. Using approachable prose, this book will give students a more precise critical language to discuss “common sense” phenomena about media.
The book acknowledges that students begin introductory film and television courses thinking they already know a great deal about the subject. What Media Classes Really Want To Discuss provides students with a solid starting point for discussing their assumptions critically and encourages the reader to argue with the book, furthering the 'discussion' on media in everyday life and in the classroom.
Preface: A Note to the Student About Why This Book Is Different. 1. "It’s Just a Movie:" Why You Should Analyze Film and Television. Part One: Discussing How Media Work 2. What Is Realism, Really? 3. How Do We Identify with Characters? 4. Genre Schmenre. Part Two: Discussing Media and Society. 5. "Studies Show:" How To Understand Media Violence/Effects Research 6. Role Models and Stereotypes: An Introduction to the "Other". Part Three: Discussing Media’s Future Now. 7. What Difference Does a Medium Make? 8. What Is Interactivity?
Greg M. Smith is Professor of Moving Image Studies in the Department of Communication at Georgia State University. Recent publications include Beautiful TV: The Art and Argument of Ally McBeal (2007) and Film Structure and the Emotion System (2003).