15 July 2016
Media, Gender & Culture
How does gender organise social and cultural life? What role does media play in sustaining gender inequality? Can media be used as a resource for contemporary cultural politics and activism? By who, and in what ways? How can we approach critical issues of power and agency in the analysis of contemporary gender relations? How can we develop intersectional analyses and transnational perspectives in the study of media, gender and culture?
This module will explore these and other questions, offering you the opportunity to study media, gender and culture in transnational perspective. As well as examining the central theoretical approaches to the study of gender, the module will offer an in-depth look at current debates over issues such as 'masculinity in crisis' and the 'sexualisation of culture'. We will explore the gendered dimensions of contemporary media and cultural trends, considering issues of gender and social change; power and representation; culture and agency; social critique and cultural politics. We will also take a number of case studies - such as the SlutWalk protest movement - to examine the social and cultural context of gender inequality, and think through some of the ways social media might be used as a tool of social change. At all points the module will promote intersectional thinking, as we consider how gender intersects with other axes of power, such as sexuality, race and class. In dedicated workshops you will learn how to apply theory in the analysis of media texts, including screen and print media, as well as digital and online media. Taking full advantage of our location in central London, the class will visit many of the capital's foremost cultural institutes – including the British Film Institute (BFI), the Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) and the Tate and the National Gallery – and you will have the opportunity to meet with insiders from the media and cultural industries. You will develop the knowledge and critical skills necessary to analyse gender, media and culture in global arena.
This module is for all students interested in the critical analysis of media, gender and contemporary culture, and will be particularly suited to students working in the fields of cultural studies, media and communications, sociology, psychology, anthropology, gender or women’s studies, English and American studies, and other related disciplines. There are no pre-requisites to taking the module, though it is recommended that all students familiarise themselves with the programme’s key texts.
In taking this module you will develop a critical appreciation of the central theoretical approaches in the study of media, gender and culture, and will learn to apply theory in the analysis of contemporary media and cultural trends. You will gain in-depth understanding of critical debates within the field of feminist media studies, in particular current debates surrounding the ‘sexualisation of culture’, which has become an important education and social policy issue. Through media workshops, you will learn how to examine a range of media texts – including film, TV programmes and magazines, as well as online and digital media – and apply the appropriate conceptual tools to independently analyse media texts. You will present and discuss your analyses in class and will also engage in a range of group work activities, developing the skills necessary to communicate your ideas effectively and work both autonomously and in dialogue with others. Through close readings of key debates in the field, you will learn how to structure academic arguments; class discussion and written assessment will ensure that you are able to present their arguments in both oral and written format. By the end of the module, you will have a good understanding of the concepts and principles that organise the field of feminist media studies today, and will be able to evaluate and apply theory in the analysis of media representations and practices. Those interested in pursuing study in this area will be well placed to identify topics to take forward for further research and theoretical development, and will have the critical faculties necessary to independently examine and critically analyse contemporary media culture from a gendered perspective.
Many of our students get credit for the summer modules taken at King’s. You should approach your home university before applying as it is up to them to apply the credit to your degree programme. We would recommend a three week module would be equivalent to 3-4 US credits or 7.5 ECTS.
GBP 1590: Tuition fee only