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Educating Media Literacy

The Need for Critical Media Literacy in Teacher Education

Series:

Allison T. Butler

Critical media literacy is a necessary part of young people’s education and can foster the space for a more thoroughly informed and involved citizenry. In order to make critical media literacy sustainable in K-12 classrooms, learning and application of it must begin with teachers, preferably during their formal schooling. Educating Media Literacy is a manifesto for the inclusion of media literacy in teacher education and, by extension, in K-12 classrooms. Through a discussion of critical media literacy’s aims and the role of teacher education in the United States, this book argues for the inclusion of critical media literacy in teacher education.

Educating Media Literacy addresses two separate topics – teacher education and media literacy – and illustrates how they are intertwined: The United States struggles simultaneously with how best to train and retain prospective teachers and how to foster a better understanding of mainstream media. These two struggles can join forces and move towards a solution through the following: The inclusion of critical media literacy in teacher education programs.
The series critically investigates and informs the construction of youth identity and identity in general through the study of various forms of contemporary media. It will expand the notions of critical media literacy and its implications for multiple understandings of culture and youth. Since popular culture (including media texts) is one of the primary sites of education for our youth, and all of us, it is crucial for those scholars involved in critical media studies to discuss these issues in book form. The scope of books in this series will include scholarly investigations into the connections among the symbolic order, various forms of cultural artifacts and multiple critical readings of these artifacts within the context of critical/transformational media literacy. How do multiple interpretations of popular culture within conceptualizations of media enhance our understandings of education and how can critical pedagogy, in the Freirian sense, be expanded to develop a student’s critical consciousness of the texts (books, films, games, social media, etc.) that surround them in popular culture.

Authors are cordially invited to submit proposals and/or full manuscripts by e-mail to Assistant Editor Evelien van der Veer or Series Editor William M. Reynolds.

The Critical Media Literacy Guide

Engaging Media and Transforming Education

Series:

Douglas Kellner and Jeff Share

Over half the world’s population is now online, interconnected through a globally-networked media and consumer society. The convergence of information, media, and technology has created the predominant ecosystem of our time. Yet, most educational institutions are still teaching what and how they have for centuries, and are thus increasingly out-of-date and out-of-touch with our current needs. The Critical Media Literacy Guide: Engaging Media and Transforming Education provides a theoretical framework and practical applications for educators and teacher education programs to transform education by putting critical media literacy into action in classrooms with students from kindergarten to university. Douglas Kellner and Jeff Share lay out the evolution of thinking and development of media and cultural studies, from the Frankfurt School to current intersectional theories about information and power that highlight the importance of race, gender, class, and sexuality. They provide insightful and accessible entry into theorizing education and information communication technologies through linking the politics of representation with critical pedagogy.

The increase in fake news, alternative facts, bots, and trolls, challenge our abilities to judge credibility and recognize bias. Kellner and Share present a critical lens and strategies to contextualize and analyze the dominant ideologies going viral across social media platforms and disseminated globally from enormous transnational corporations. The Critical Media Literacy Guide is a powerful resource to analyze and challenge representations and narratives of multiple forms of identity, privilege, and oppression. Since the struggle for social justice and democracy require new theories and pedagogies to maneuverer the constantly changing terrain, this book is essential for all educators.

Series:

Edited by Christian Z. Goering and Paul L. Thomas

This edited collection is not a response to the 2016 United States Presidential Election so much as it is a response to the issues highlighted through that single event and since when incredibly smart, sophisticated, and intelligent members of our society were confused by misinformation campaigns. While media literacy and critical media literacy are ideas with long histories in formal education, including K-12 students and higher education, the need for increased attention to these issues has never reached a flash point like the present. The essays collected here are confrontations of post-truth, fake news, mainstream media, and traditional approaches to formal schooling. But there are no simple answers or quick fixes. Critical media literacy, we argue here, may well be the only thing between a free people and their freedom.

Democracy 2.0

Media, Political Literacy and Critical Engagement

Series:

Edited by Paul R. Carr, Michael Hoechsmann and Gina Thésée

Participatory media 2.0 have shifted the terrain of public life. We are all—individually and collectively—able to produce and circulate media to a potentially limitless audience, and we are all, at minimum, arbiters of knowledge and information through the choices—or clicks—we make when online. In this new environment of two-way and multidimensional media flow, digital communication tools, platforms and spaces offer enormous potential for the cultivation, development and circulation of diverse and counter-hegemonic perspectives. It has also provoked a crisis of communication between oppositional “echo chambers.”

Democracy requires a functioning, critically-engaged and literate populace, one that can participate in, cultivate and shape, in meaningful and critical ways, the discourses and forms of the society in which it exists. Education for democracy, therefore, requires not only political literacy but also media and digital literacies, given the ubiquity and immersiveness of Media 2.0 in our lives.

In Democracy 2.0, we feature a series of evocative, international case studies that document the impact of alternative and community use of media, in general, and Web 2.0 in particular. The aim is to foster critical reflection on social realities, developing the context for coalition-building in support of social change and social justice. The chapters herein examine activist uses of social and visual media within a broad and critical frame, underpinning the potential of alternative and DIY (Do It Yourself) media to impact and help forge community relationships, to foster engagement in the civic and social life of citizens across the globe and, ultimately, to support thicker forms of democratic participation, engagement and conscientization, beyond electoralist, representative, normative democracy.

Series:

Edited by Ann Watts Pailliotet and Peter B. Mosenthal

Information about issues and procedures for media or visual literacy is currently widely dispersed. This title advances current scholarship by transcending traditional research boundaries and combining a number of different backgrounds, such as cultural studies, reading, computers and technology, sociology, textual criticism. It supports an interdisciplinary curriculum; in depth reviews of how media and visual literacy support and extend current print literacy theories and practices; it provides explicit examples of research methodologies and accounts of implementation procedures and policies in schools and colleges. This work focuses on a wide spectrum of media like film, television, children's picture books, computers and newspapers. The contributing authors, who read as a who is who in media literacy come from diverse disciplines, locations, and backgrounds, employ varied lenses and formats to provide broad, innovative definitions of literacy.
Cultural studies provides an analytical toolbox for both making sense of educational practice and extending the insights of educational professionals into their labors. In this context Transgressions: Cultural Studies and Education provides a collection of books in the domain that specify this assertion. Crafted for an audience of teachers, teacher educators, scholars and students of cultural studies and others interested in cultural studies and pedagogy, the series documents both the possibilities of and the controversies surrounding the intersection of cultural studies and education. The editors and the authors of this series do not assume that the interaction of cultural studies and education devalues other types of knowledge and analytical forms. Rather the intersection of these knowledge disciplines offers a rejuvenating, optimistic, and positive perspective on education and educational institutions. Some might describe its contribution as democratic, emancipatory, and transformative.

The editors and authors maintain that cultural studies helps free educators from sterile, monolithic analyses that have for too long undermined efforts to think of educational practices by providing other words, new languages, and fresh metaphors. Operating in an interdisciplinary cosmos, Transgressions: Cultural Studies and Education is dedicated to exploring the ways cultural studies enhances the study and practice of education. With this in mind the series focuses in a non-exclusive way on popular culture as well as other dimensions of cultural studies including social theory, social justice and positionality, cultural dimensions of technological innovation, new media and media literacy, new forms of oppression emerging in an electronic hyperreality, and postcolonial global concerns. With these concerns in mind cultural studies scholars often argue that the realm of popular culture is the most powerful educational force in contemporary culture. Indeed, in the twenty-first century this pedagogical dynamic is sweeping through the entire world. Educators, they believe, must understand these emerging realities in order to gain an important voice in the pedagogical conversation.

Without an understanding of cultural pedagogy's (education that takes place outside of formal schooling) role in the shaping of individual identity—youth identity in particular—the role educators play in the lives of their students will continue to fade. Why do so many of our students feel that life is incomprehensible and devoid of meaning? What does it mean, teachers wonder, when young people are unable to describe their moods, their affective affiliation to the society around them. Meanings provided young people by mainstream institutions often do little to help them deal with their affective complexity, their difficulty negotiating the rift between meaning and affect. School knowledge and educational expectations seem as anachronistic as a ditto machine, not that learning ways of rational thought and making sense of the world are unimportant.

But school knowledge and educational expectations often have little to offer students about making sense of the way they feel, the way their affective lives are shaped. In no way do we argue that analysis of the production of youth in an electronic mediated world demands some "touchy-feely" educational superficiality. What is needed in this context is a rigorous analysis of the interrelationship between pedagogy, popular culture, meaning making, and youth subjectivity. In an era marked by youth depression, violence, and suicide such insights become extremely important, even life saving. Pessimism about the future is the common sense of many contemporary youth with its concomitant feeling that no one can make a difference.

If affective production can be shaped to reflect these perspectives, then it can be reshaped to lay the groundwork for optimism, passionate commitment, and transformative educational and political activity. In these ways cultural studies adds a dimension to the work of education unfilled by any other sub-discipline. This is what Transgressions: Cultural Studies and Education seeks to produce—literature on these issues that makes a difference. It seeks to publish studies that help those who work with young people, those individuals involved in the disciplines that study children and youth, and young people themselves improve their lives in these bizarre times.

This book series is dedicated to the radical love and actions of Paulo Freire, Jesus “Pato” Gomez, and Joe L. Kincheloe.

Cracking Facebook

The Importance of Understanding Technology-Based Communication

Series:

Maria Leena Korpijaakko

This book presents a Facebook study on members of the Cusp Generation, or those born before the “great digital divide” of 1995. This delineation allows for a discussion on the possible socio-cultural implications of Facebook use for people of all ages. Members of the Cusp Generation are in a unique position as “part digital natives” to easily acquire and use new media technologies, while being more critically aware of the personal, social, and cultural effects that may arise from them thanks to having some memory of the pre-digital era. Drawing on identity theories rooted in critical theory and cultural studies, the author shows that there are potential constrictions on people’s agency in their Facebook use caused by consumer discourse, Facebook’s hyperreal nature and structure, psychological predispositions, and the potential for avatar attachment. In raising concerns over the impacts of technology-based communication, this book explores how the medium of Facebook extends and exacerbates processes of offline social reproduction and discusses how the positive social and political aspects of Facebook can be enhanced. The findings contribute to academic discussions in the fields of cultural studies and Education and can be applied to the development of critical media literacy for curriculum and pedagogy.

Series:

James Trier

Guy Debord, the Situationist International, and the Revolutionary Spirit presents a history of the two avant-garde groups that French filmmaker and subversive strategist Guy Debord founded and led: the Lettrist International (1952–1957) and the Situationist International (1957–1972). Debord is popularly known for his classic book The Society of the Spectacle (1967), but his masterwork is the Situationist International (SI), which he fashioned into an international revolutionary avant-garde group that orchestrated student protests at the University of Strasbourg in 1966, contributed to student unrest at the University of Nanterre in 1967–1968, and played an important role in the occupations movement that brought French society to a standstill in May of 1968.

The book begins with a brief history of the Lettrist International that explores the group’s conceptualization and practice of the critical anti-art practice of détournement, as well as the subversive spatial practices of the dérive, psychogeography, and unitary urbanism. These practices, which became central to the Situationist International, anticipated many contemporary cultural practices, including culture jamming, critical media literacy, and critical public pedagogy. This book follows up the edited book Détournement as Pedagogical Praxis (Sense Publishers, 2014), and together they offer readers, particularly those in the field of Education, an introduction to the history, concepts, and critical practices of a group whose revolutionary spirit permeates contemporary culture, as can be seen in the political actions of Pussy Riot in Russia, the “yellow vest” protesters in France, the #BlackLivesMatter movement, and the striking teachers and student protesters on campuses throughout the U.S.

Edited by William M. Reynolds and Brad Porfilio

The Brill Guides to Scholarship in Education are short introductions to various fields in education for experts and novices. Though sophisticated in content, the style of these books will be less structured or restricted than existing guides taking a novel approach, they can be used as an educational tool in undergraduate and graduate courses as introductory texts.

Authors are cordially invited to submit proposals and/or full manuscripts by e-mail to Assistant Editor Evelien van der Veer.