a) Media and American Society and Culture

Erik:

Mr. Sut Jhally’s lecture titled “The Factory in the Living Room: How Television exploits its Audience”. Is concerned with the argument that TV is an active process not a passive one. He argues that the reason for this is due to advertising. He also states that since TV is work then letting your child watch TV can be considered child abuse. I agree with his argument that watching television is work and that the purpose of television is to sell to advertisers groups of people who are likely to purchase the products they are selling. I for one hate watching TV. The only reason I watch TV is so that I have something to talk with my friends and co-workers about. Mr. Jhally’s arguments also answer some of the paradoxes I feel exist when it comes to TV. For example why shows can get cancelled even when they are moderately popular. If the point of TV was to create the media that we watch popularity would not be a very big issue. In other art forms the art is created regardless of the popularity of the resultant artwork. He is also accurate when he points out that this same advertising model is beginning to drive the Internet. For example Google is an advertising company. Every service that Google provides its users for free is an attempt to provide advertisers with a similar group of people who are likely to purchase their product. Microsoft does this as well and Facebook is just starting to get into the act as well. While I will not prevent my kids from watching TV I will definitely make sure that it does not become the babysitter or the center of my family time.

Emilee:

Does globalization cause poverty in the U.S.?

Noam Chomsky describes the word globalism as a term that “has been appropriated by the powerful to refer to a specific form of international economic integration, one based on investor rights, with the interests of people incidental.” Although it may be difficult to pin-point how globalization directly correlates to poverty in the U.S., there are many variables that seem to play a part in the effects that globalization has on wealth disparity in the U.S. An obvious example of how globalization has contributed to poverty in the U.S. was the outsourcing of automobile manufacturing.

After the automotive industry in Detroit collapsed, it had a devastating effect on the economy and the people whose livelihoods were dependent upon that industry. A less obvious example would be the implementation of NAFTA. The outsourcing of agricultural products such as corn from Mexico had a devastating effect on farmers in Mexico since they could no longer compete with the mass produced farming of corn. How this in turn affects American citizens is debatable but on a long term basis, what is bad for neighboring countries is likely not good for the U.S. as a whole.

Michele:

 How does globalization affect women in the U.S.?

For women globalization can be both harmful and helpful.  While women have always been repressed in most countries if globalization were to happen it could be very liberating for those women. It would help in the treatment of women, and would help bring women together.

It can be harmful as well.It would have a very negative effect on most women.  Especially, for women in the South.  There are three main reasons that globalization in women is harmful:

  1. Politically because of the pressure from other countries where women are repressed that could turn back the hands of times on womens rights.  Example:  Voting, running for office, working and more.
  2. Culturally  because they would lose their way of life that they have known for hundreds of years.  Losing they culture, ceremonies and speech that they have always known.
  3. Economically because of they could lose their jobs to male workers. Which means they would have to either lose their jobs or have to work for very little money in sweatshops or other low paying jobs.  They could be exploited.

women-encounter-globalization

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