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Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Audience Theories

    Hypodermic Needle Model:

  • ·         Developed by Frankfurt School of academics (Adorno and Horkheimer)
  • ·         They worked in Germany in 1930s and were influenced by the success of Nazi propaganda
  • ·         The media ‘injects’ its message directly into the audience
  • ·         This model sees the audience as passive
  • ·         Mass audience model

Uses and Gratifications Model:

  • ·         Blumler and Katz
  • ·         This model suggests that audiences have expectations which they expect to be satisfied by media texts

  The audience needs are:

  • ·         surveillance – telling us about the world around us
  • ·         personal identity – influences how we see ourselves and our place in society
  • ·         personal relationships – develop relationships with media characters; aids social interaction
  • ·         diversion – provides escapism from daily life




    The possible positions are: 

  • ·         Dominant – the reader shares the text’s code and accepts its preferred reading
  • ·         Negotiated – understands the text’s code, generally accepts the preferred reading but modifies it according to their social position and experiences
  • ·         Oppositional – understands the code but rejects the preferred reading.  The audience member will be reading the text from an oppositional position (e.g. a feminist reading)

      Social and Cultural Context:

  • David Morley
  •  Reception theory – ‘the politics of the living room’
  •  The meaning of the text will be constructed differently depending on the audience member’s position in society
  • Differences based on things like social class, gender, and ethnicity, may determine an individual’s cultural tastes
  • People from different social groups will have a knowledge of the codes of different types of media text
  • Stuart Hall
  • The preferred reading of the text is encoded using technologies and conventions of the medium
  • Audience members will respond to the text in different ways

Madonna - Like a Prayer

      Audience Theory
      Madonna – Like a Prayer
      Hypodermic Needle Model
     The message within like a prayer tells the audience that they shouldnt hesitate or live in fear and to believe in religion as it will guide you in the right direction to make the right decision.
     Uses and Gratifications Model
     The audience expectation of this music video by Madonna would generally be high as Madonna is a highly rated musician but other than that they would expect to be able to listen/watch like a prayer and expect to escape from the individual viewers life and feel they can relate them selves to the characters in the narrative. This also informs the viewers as to what the world is like around them and allows them to see where they stand themselves in the society they live in. 
     The way that the song is interpreted by the audience is dependent on their personal views and opinions. Some may watch the video and accept it for what it is where others may take the narrative of the video and amend it to relate themselves to the narrative. Alternatively there could be some viewers who completely disagree with the text for their own reasons and will oppose to the text, for example of like a prayer some audience members may be religious and disagree with the narrative. 
     Social + Culture Context
     Again, the interpretation of the song is dependent on the audience members beliefs and views, whether they are of a religious or ethnic origin and don't agree with the music video for Like A Prayer. Alternatively,depending on the audience's position in society they may actually agree with the content and narrative of Like A Prayer and feel that the way the video and message of the song are portrayed is acceptable. 

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