Politics, Power and the Media
Is there a relationship between accumulated political power and mass media representations? Is news content impacted by existing political power relations? It is the object of this course to critically analyze the role of the mass media within the framework of existing political power relations in the United States. In particular, the course will focus on the role the mass media plays in promoting and reinforcing dominant political practices and ideologies. The course will begin by exploring various theories of the press, notably its function in a democratic society, as well as the concepts of power and propaganda. We will continue with a series of case studies, complemented by secondary sources that highlight how media representations affect the contemporary distribution of political power in the US. Topics of discussion will include the current US war on terrorism, the ongoing health care debate, the public disavowal of "big government", and the concept of a liberal media.