Melissa will be doing her project on the differences in advertising for alcohol in various countries. She will be comparing these commercials with the respective countries’ drinking ages and laws. She noticed a contradiction in many of the places with young drinking ages and restrictions on advertising in those countries. She will be looking at the connection between these two variables as she compares countries’ media representation of drinking.
Rachel is going to write about how street art and graffiti can serve as an alternative medium of communication. The existence of this accessible, anarchical and anonymous form of media is an important issue to study in contemporary society, particularly in contexts which engender political censorship. To look more in depth at this issue, she will research prominant street artists such as Banksy, from England, and and Sr. X, from Spain. Both artists work principally with stencils, and tend to make captivating and satirical political and/or social statements in their work. The topic of how this form of communication can contribute to the public dialouge is fascinating because it is a rare example of anonymity in today’s media. Similarly, it is an example of a non-partisan and non-commercial form of social commentary. The impact of non-digital forms of media is also a factor worth studying within this topic, although it brings up the question as to what role the internet has had in distributing the messages of these street artists around the world.
Robbie will be analyzing the animated movie Lilo and Stitch (2002). The project will be a part of the group’s diachronic analysis of Disney movies and their change through the decades. The main theme in the Lilo and Stitch movie is the Hawaiian idea of family, also known as Ohana. Ohana is constantly repeated to drive forward the idea of belonging. Therefore, Robbie will be looking at how Disney portrays Hawaiian culture, family and how the characters overcome diversity. Since it is the most recently made movie of the group project, it allows Robbie to focus on the progress that Disney has made over the last century.
Dasha will be analyzing the movie Beauty and the Beast. Her individual project will be tied into our larger group project that is diachronic analysis of Disney Movies and how they have from decade to decade. The changes that we are looking for are things such as how women are treated, family values, and culture. In Beauty and the Beast Dasha will focus on the role of Bell, the Beauty of the movie, she will analyze how Disney portrays Bell as a woman. She will be focusing on how she is portrayed as intelligent and strong. The movie was released in 1991 allowing Dasha to contrast what is considered appropriate today versus a quarter century ago.
Caroline Cacabelos, one of the members in my group will discuss social media’s double standard on women. The examples she will use are using media users’ critiques and comments on both women in music and men in music. I think this topic would be very interesting because when you usually think of the objectification of women on social media, posters and advertisements come to mind so I think that it would be very interesting to analyze this other medium. She will explain how many people will be more negatively critical of women musicians based on what they are wearing (or are not wearing) versus how many people will be more positively critical of men musicians based on what they are wearing (or are not wearing). I think this is something that is often talked about very lightly and generally accepted but I have never seen someone analyze it and am looking forward to see what she writes. The only worry would be the broadness of the topic and I feel it is important to focus on one specific aspect such as the way musicians dress according to their gender and how they live their lives specifically rather than generalizing broader stereotypes that we have in our society. Good luck!
– Livia Gasparini
My project is going to be on the differences between Europe and the US regarding drinking ages and alcohol advertising. It’s interesting that some countries have relatively young or nonexistent drinking ages, yet alcohol advertising are banned in some of these places. The USA on the other hand has less restriction on the content of alcohol advertising, but a much stricter policy on drinking age.
Tyler is doing a project about shock advertising. These types of ads are intended to grab viewers’ attention by surprising them. Usually these ads are controversial, so she will have a lot to focus on with the costs and benefits of such ads. Tyler showed me different examples of ads that she will use for her project and some of them I couldn’t even imagine seeing while walking down the street. I think this is an awesome topic to choose because there is so much to work with. She has the choice to narrow it down and compare a couple of countries, or focus on international ads where she’d be looking at a broader range of nations. Beyond that, she also can choose which field she wants to focus on; fashion would be an interesting choice, as would tobacco and/or alcohol brands.
You may or may not have heard of this, but a hot topic in recent times is the American football player Kaepernick. The reason for this is because he refused to stand during the U.S. national anthem during a football game. Our fellow classmate Brenden decided to take it upon himself to write up his individual project on the media coverage of this story. Not only is it a topic which is still very much relevant in current times, but it is also one we will be writing about once we do our group project as the “Silver Tongues” which of course will give him plenty of resources to help guide us once it is time for that. However, Brenden is not only analyzing the coverage of Kaepernick. As any Silver Tongue would, he felt the need to push further and to compare it to another important social justice protest which happened some 60 years ago now. You guessed it… Rosa Parks‘ refusal to stand for a white individual to take her seat in a bus is a movement many rallied behind. At the time this was also a hot topic and although initially I am sure the coverage of her actions were mostly negative, she has become an icon for social justice in the U.S..
For this reason Brenden will be comparing and contrasting media coverage of the two events and in the near future sharing his take on this coverage. Hopefully we will have seen some progress in the way people covered the events, but I must say I myself doubt it.
One piece of advice I gave was to also perhaps bring in to the conversation the black fist salute used by African American gold medalists in the 1968 olympic games, which was also treated as disrespectful and non-patriotic. Having said this, Rosa Parks and Kaepernick already offer plenty of material for Brenden, and so I most certainly do not see this as a necessity as too many different sources of material may end up watering it down by giving Brenden less time to go deep into it. I trust he has it all under control and will provide us with an insightful comparison whatever he decides!
Thank you for your time, Good Day and Good Luck!
Signing off – Pedro Candela Terry
For Raghad’s Individual Paper, she is going to analyse one of Disney’s very well known movies “The Little Mermaid”. In her analysis she will look at wether Disney promotes diversity or not. She will also look into gender roles in the movie and the roles given to both sex ( male and female ). I think her topic is very interesting as Walt Disney has made a huge impact on the lives of children in multiple generations and is still making an impact on adults as well. Take me as an example, I looked up at Disney Princess as role models, I always pretended that I was as beautiful as cinderella and that one day my prince charming will find me and provided me with the amazing life that I always wanted. I’m sure I’m not the only girl who though that way when she was 7 or 8 years old. I can’t wait to read Raghad’s paper as I know it will be very interesting.
For Pedro’s independent project he will be applying the propaganda model looking at examples concerning media coverage of Obamacare compared with a US loan of 38 billion dollars to Israel essentially for weapons manufacturers. One of the main points of this is to look at public perception of where their tax dollars go to since there is usually outrage over a health care system than money being sent to foreign governments for means of future war. Pedro will be looking at the time spent covered on both subjects and the effect to which they were covered and the language used. In his research he will also be sure to see if any of the sources he is using are sponsored by certain Health care entities or gun/weapons manufacturers. I think Pedro has picked a very interesting topic which covers the contradictions many Americans make when speaking out against where there tax dollars actually go to.
For Reem’s individual project, she will analyze one of Disney’s movies, Aladdin. She will be looking into whether the movie promotes diversity or not, then compare it with other Disney movies from different years and see how Disney’s view on diversity changed over time. She will also be looking at how the Arab culture was portrayed in the movie, and whether it was based on stereotypes or reality. I think Reem should try to analyze the main characters, and look into the characteristics and behaviors of each one of them, since Disney’s view will be reflected in the characters. I think it’s a fun and an interesting topic; I am looking forward to see the final version of Reem’s project.