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By James Curran, Tamar Liebes

Media, Ritual and Identity examines the function of the media in society; its advanced impact on democratic tactics and its participation within the building and confirmation of other social identities.
It attracts widely upon cultural anthropology and combines a commanding review of latest media debates with a chain of attention-grabbing case stories starting from political ritual on tv to broadcasting within the 3rd global.

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Extra info for Media, Ritual and Identity (Communication and Society)

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1980 [1768]) An Essay on the History of Civil Society, Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books. Fiske, J. (1994) Media Matters: Everyday Culture and Political Change. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. Frye, N. (1957) Anatomy of Criticism. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Gitlin, T. (1978) “Media sociology: the dominant paradigm,” Theory and Society 6:205–53. Habermas, J. (1987) The Theory of Communicative Action (trans. McCarthy), vol. , Boston, MA: Beacon Press. Habermas, J. (1989 [1962]) The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere (trans.

Understanding the cultural impact of the Rodney King beating will take us a long way toward understanding the way in which the media works in civil society. Communication, ritual and society 35 While the Watergate case began slowly, with the ritualized and televised Senate hearing coming only a full year after the initial event, in the case of Rodney King it was the spontaneously recorded and nearly contemporaneous televised event itself which provoked the crisis. This does not mean that the event captured in the videotape determined the subsequent narration of the crisis.

We will provide a more detailed and sustained outline of our own position on civil society later in the chapter. As a prologomena to our initial discussion of Katz’s work, however, we would like to discuss the “dominant paradigm” of civil society theory in terms of its assumptions regarding the media. By dominant paradigm we have in mind those theories which focus exclusively on the formal political arrangements, legal procedures, and narrowly defined institutional structures that are necessary for differentiating power away from the state and toward the civil sphere of voluntary action.

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