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Communicating Unreality
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Communicating Unreality
Modern Media and the Reconstruction of Reality


Volume: 1

November 1999 | 456 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

From interactive, real-time Internet broadcasts to video game-like images of smart bombs on television, our perception of reality is shaped by the mass media. Willing or not, we are a mass mediated society, and the electronic media, especially television and computer-mediated-communication, plays a vital role in our daily lives.

Communicating Unreality reviews the images and meanings of our mass-mediated world. With careful attention to the integration of news and entertainment, fact and fiction, and event and story, author Gabriel Weimann examines our symbolic environment, where reality and fiction are almost inseparable. Through discussion of mass-mediated images of people, cultures, war, love, sex, death, community, and identity, we learn that there often exists a large gap between reality and reconstruction of "realities" as communicated by the mass media. This comprehensive and entertaining textbook can breathe life into the standard mass communication course. Students, professors, and everyone interested in the influence of the media will enjoy this book.


 
Preface
 
PART ONE: THE RECONSTRUCTION OF REALITY
 
Living in a Mediated World
 
The Debate Over Media Effects
 
Cultivation and Mainstreaming
 
The Psychology of Cultivation
 
PART TWO: MEDIATED REALITIES
 
The Mean and Scary World
 
Sex and Sexuality
 
Death and Suicide
 
The World According to MTV
 
Portrayal of Groups
 
Images of America
 
The Unreal War
 
PART THREE: CONCLUSIONS
 
Virtual Reality:
Virtual or Real?

 
 
Communicating Unreality

"Clearly written and interesting to read, this book makes good use of the history of famous studies and scholars, covers the waterfront of mass communication topics, and is backed up by a large number of references. . . I would use this text in my Sociology of Mass Communication course." 

Everett M. Rodgers
University of New Mexico

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