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Representation according to Stuart Hall - Coursework Example

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The author of the "Representation according to Stuart Hall" paper explains how this concept applies to cultural diversity and the media. The author explains what hegemony is and identifies whether this concept helps to understand the prevalence of stereotypes in media concept…
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Representation according to Stuart Hall
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Download file to see previous pages The case of the prevalence of stereotypes in the media aptly exemplifies a type of cultural hegemony, albeit the political and economic hegemony can still underpin this development. Cultural hegemony refers to the domination of a culturally variegated society by the elite or the ruling class. The ruling class in this case manipulates the tools and elements of socialisation such as the media, beliefs, values, social mores, explanations and perceptions. The manipulation of the tools of socialisation enables the conscience of the society to be synchronised with an imposed worldview as the accepted cultural norm, universally legitimate and dominant ideology. The accepted cultural norm becomes the ideology that explains and justifies the political, economic and social status quo as legitimate, natural, inevitable, sustainable and all-beneficial.

In light of the foregoing discussion, it is true that hegemony is not only real and palpable in the modern society, but it also manifests itself in stereotypes, particularly in the media. Nevertheless, it is important to remember that in the discussion, cultural hegemony in the media can be exacted at both the national and international levels, as shall be seen forthwith.

One of the ways in which the concept of hegemony helps understand the prevalence of stereotypes in the media is the constant use of symbolic annihilation. Symbolic annihilation refers to the suppression of achievements of a given social group or subgroup in the media. Because of this, the achievements of a particular group or individuals representing these groups often go unreported. At other instances, such achievements may either be trivialised or condemned by the mass media. The use of symbolic annihilation has been used several times and can therefore be used to understand the dynamics that take place in the media.

For instance, Kian, Vincent and Mondello (2008, 238) argue that television sports presentations provide scanty details on women’s participation and success. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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