COM 4411: Communication and Popular Culture
Course Description for Communication and Popular Culture
Communication and Popular Culture
Prerequisite: MMC 3614 or Permission of Instructor
This course studies media, whether TV, advertising, film sports, music, fiction, or some other means by which a culture is formed. Students could investigate popular icons, rituals, myth, archetypes, formulae, or heroes/heroines as elements in collective experience that reflect and contribute to the formation of a culture's beliefs, mores, customs, attitudes, or laws. How pop culture is constructed, deconstructed, and maintained and how gender, ethnicity, or class are factors in cult reception as media, through its various elements, create apparent needs in a mass society. The class will apply theories, such as semiotics, genre theory, and ideology to internet media events as means for communicating and forming/reforming culture. A guiding quest is: What do particular popular cultural artifacts communicate and how do they function in the life of culture? Another is: What is gained, damaged, or lost as media participate in virtually every aspect of a culture?