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Critical Political Economy of the Media : An Introduction - Jonathan Hardy

Critical Political Economy of the Media

An Introduction


Published: 16th June 2014
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What part do the media play in the democratic processes of society? What influences the media? How do different societies organise their media systems? Where does power over the media lie? To what extent do 'new media' change things? Critical Political Economy of the Media: An Introduction aims to answer these key questions, providing students with a broad-ranging, accessible introduction to the international political economy of media. This book examines transformations of the media and media systems. From changes in the mass media of broadcasting and print, to digitalization and the internet, it looks at different ways of making sense of these transformations and considers a range of questions concerning media power and influence. The book explores a central claim of political economists that there are important relationships between the content and output of media and the way in which media production is organised. Political economy is concerned with questions about the relationship between media and society, with questions of media influence, and questions about how media power connects with other forms of power in society. It is concerned with questions about how media industries and cultural work is organised, and why this matters for the range and quality of what is produced by journalists, media professionals and creative workers. It considers such issues as the influence of policy and regulation, market forces and commercial dynamics. In doing so, the book introduces and compares culturalist and other interpretations with studies emphasising the role of the state, media ownership, advertising and market structures as forms of media control. Topics covered include: media globalisation and national media; political economy of the Internet; media commercialism; media and advertising; news journalism and entertainment media; media convergence and policy; democracy and the media; comparing media and political systems across the globe. Media political economy is examined with particular reference to Western industrial democracies. However, the book is international in scope and comparative in its approach to national media systems and in exploring processes of transnationalisation and convergence. Detailed empirical evidence and case studies are used to support the arguments made, thus providing students with a resource to help them assess claims and a guide for further research and study.

"Jonathan Hardy's book deals in a highly astute manner with the question: How are the media shaped by and shaping capitalism and power structures? It is an excellent resource for scholars, students, activists and citizens who are interested in the critique of the political economy of the media and who want to understand what informational capitalism is doing to us and how we can politically resist it." Christian Fuchs, Professor of Social Media, University of Westminster "Questions about the arrogance of media owners, the pervasiveness of advertising and public relations, the failure of regulation, and the pressures on public cultural institutions, are once again rising to the top of the agenda for debate. Jonathan Hardy's timely intervention provides an admirably clear and accessible introduction to a tradition of inquiry, critical political economy, that has always placed these issues centre-stage. Anyone seriously interested in unpicking the ways media are shaped by the shifting play of power between corporations, governments and civil society will find this book an indispensable guide." Graham Murdock, Professor of Culture and Economy, Loughborough University "The critical study of the political economy of the media has never been more important. Jonathan Hardy provides an excellent overview of this vital perspective in a book that should become a key text in media and communication studies." Janet Wasko, Professor & Knight Chair in Communication Research, University of Oregon

Introduction/Foreword, James Curran Part I: Mapping approaches and themes 1. What (is) political economy of the media? 2. Paradigms of media power: liberal and radical perspectives on media processes 3. Media cultures, media economics and media problems Part II: Critical investigations in political economy 4. Concentration, conglomeration, commercialisation 5. Political economy of the internet and digital media 6. Commodification, media integration and commercial speech Part III: Media systems and democracy 7. Media, democracy and policy 8. Globalisation, media transnationalisation and culture 9. Comparative Media and Communications Systems 10. Media Convergence and Communications Regulation Part IV: Interventions and Change 11. Media power, challenges and alternatives 12: Reflections on the project of critical political economy Bibliography and Notes

ISBN: 9780415544849
ISBN-10: 041554484X
Series: Communication and Society
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 266
Published: 16th June 2014
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.8  x 1.5
Weight (kg): 0.42
Edition Number: 1