Essay On Media Representation

1455 Words6 Pages
The term representation describes how someone, or something may be presented in a particular way within a text. Texts are products of the culture from which they emerge, and they go on to shape this culture further. These things may be represented positively or negatively by the agent who’s portraying them. Stereotypes are often a big part of how people are portrayed for example: the typical Asian man is usually depicted as a taxi driver while your typical women are portrayed as a housewife. Stereotypes often overemphasise certain characteristics about specific groups and often operate with an ‘us versus them’ mentality. Media is often thought to contain polysemic openness – meaning that media is open to a lot of meanings but not infinite ones. Upon viewing media, audiences are able to decode the messages that creators have put into the media. Although, they may not always decode these messages how the creator intended. Nicholas Granham (1992) said that ‘it is impossible to conceive of a viable democratic polity without at the same time conceiving of at least some common normative dimension’. This suggests that for democracy to work we must have some kind of collective understanding about groups within our society. This argument leads to the idea that actually representation isn’t damaging to society but in fact helpful.…show more content…
There’s multiple ways in which representation in media can shape our cultural values. Representations can make us see things from a warped perspective, they can present things in a way that is almost a fantasy. They’re able to do this because a lot television is fiction and so media creators are able to have free rein over how certain groups are presented. This may be effective because when using real people to portray these ideas about them it’s easier to believe and relate to. However, some people do not believe that media has the power to completely change our
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