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How does Anderson argue that Media Play a Role in Imagining a Large-Scale Collectivity - Essay Example

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Media, according to Anderson, plays the role of creating as large-scale imagined society, through the creation of information channels that make the people identify with one another. In this respect, media plays the role of enlarging the imagined society…
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How does Anderson argue that Media Play a Role in Imagining a Large-Scale Collectivity
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How does Anderson argue that Media Play a Role in Imagining a Large-Scale Collectivity? Grade (Feb. 10th, 2015)
How does Anderson argue that media play a role in imagining a large-scale collectivity?
Media, according to Anderson, plays the role of creating as large-scale imagined society, through the creation of information channels that make the people identify with one another. In this respect, media plays the role of enlarging the imagined society, since the information channels serves to make a large number of people share a collective identity, for example in the names of their cities (places) and types of persons (culture), which eventually make the people share in a collectivity (Anderson, 1991). Thus, the linguistic practices that are disseminated by the media create the possibilities for imagined societies to be created. For example, Anderson observes that through print capitalism, the 18th century novels created a platform for the authorship and the readership to share in a common imagine large-scale society (Anderson, 1991). The newspaper influenced the formation of this anonymous society even more, due to the fact that it was read on a daily basis, allowing large-scale society to share and gain a feeling of belonging to the anonymous society (Anderson, 1991).
However, Spitulnik critics the view held by Anderson, through arguing that; although the mass media is an important tool for creating the imagined society, Anderson has overemphasized the role of the vertical modes of communication, at the expense of the lateral ones (Spitulnik, 1997). For example, Spitulnik argues that Anderson applies the assumption that once the media (newspaper or the novels) offer information, the society instantaneously receives and consumes it (Spitulnik, 1997). This assumption, according to Spitulnik is misleading, owing to the fact that there are other factors that influence the consumption of media-produced information, such as the repeating, recontextualizing and recycling of information, which may not really produce the same effect to all members of a society (Spitulnik, 1997).
References
Anderson, B. R. (1991). Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. London: Verso
Spitulnik, D. (1997).The Social Circulation of Media Discourse and the Mediation of Communities. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 6(2):161-187. Read More
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