Summary: The Representation Of Social Work

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The research utilises a qualitative approach, combining media / visual research methods. The paper is set out to: Understand and explore the representation of social work in Albanian media and news reports Inform and elaborate an understanding of current discourse about social work’s role and need in the country. Contribute to further research on the value, purpose, need and future of social work. Purposive sampling was used (Williman, 2006, Mathewes and Ross, 2010) for the selection of the news and media outlets for the research, as well as to form a small focus group to read and discuss the selected news outlets and their representation of the social work. The sampling was made based on social-work knowledge and expertise as the common…show more content…
According to the Foucault’s (1980) notion of the history of the present, formulation of new ideas constantly challenges existing ones in the dynamic process of linking knowledge and change. Hall (1997) sees representation as a way in which portrayal of present events can lead to coding a set of values, attitudes and social climate. May (2003) theory of research as a “reflexive endeavour” enables this research to make a thorough examination of the selected texts, to discover the level of media and public knowledge on social work in a given period of time. Qualitative interviewing of the focus groups helps detecting individual understandings and interpretations of the same text. This is a substantial part of the theoretical framework, as it focuses on Hall (1997) definition of representation and creation of meaning, which Hall defines as “the process by which members of a culture use language (signs and signifying system) to produce a meaning…show more content…
A number of theories are drawn from various disciplines (i.e. media and cultural studies, psychology, anthropology, etc) about the way how media represents reality. Media representation is the main focus of theories around portrayals (Hall 1997) and cultural studies (Grsiprund, 2002), and the central point of representation theory remains the dilemma whether the media simply reflects or actually constructs realities? On both sides, there are notable scholars defending each theory. Kellner (1995) argues that media reproduces social struggles, which in return, has an impact on the production of identities and audience understanding of the world. On the other hand, Branston and Stafford (1996) argue that media always constructs the reality and it is hardly a transparent window for this

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