ARE THERE ANY? Many of us have our own canonic texts - the kind
go away. We tell them that their time has passed, that it's
they're still around, but they turn up repeatedly on our reading
in our bibliographies. They inspire us, haunt us, argue with us --
won't leave. Typically, we keep them to ourselves.
SHOULD THERE BE? Of course there should be, and there's no
reason to hide
them. Canons (and saints) should be shared, because they define
communities. These texts are not simply monuments, however. They
and breathing, standing the test of time by shedding old meanings
assuming new ones. The minimal care they need - occasional brushing
bulb-changing - is well worth the trouble.
HOW ABOUT THESE? The field of media studies is now more than 50
and the contributors to this volume offer their own candidates for
canonization. Each of the thirteen essays in the book presents a
critical reading of one of these classics and debates its
candidacy. You are invited to disagree. The texts are summarized,
analysed and re-examined for their contemporary relevance. They are
grouped together in schools (Chicago, Columbia, Frankfurt, Toronto,
British Cultural Studies) to highlight the different perspectives
that characterize the field.
This book offers thirteen pairs of shoulders to stand on, the
better to see the field of media studies. It will serve as an
excellent teaching text for advanced students in communications and
media and cultural studies.
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