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This distinctive volume explores how romantic coupleship is represented in books, magazines, popular music, movies, television, and the Internet within entertainment, advertising, and news/information. This reader offers diverse theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches on the representation of romantic relationships across the media spectrum.
Filling a void in existing media scholarship, this collection explores the media’s influence on perceptions and expectations in relationships, including the myths, stereotypes, and prescriptions manifested throughout the press. Featuring fresh voices, as well as the perspectives of seasoned veterans, contributions include quantitative and qualitative studies along with cultural/critical, feminist, and descriptive analyses. This anthology has been developed for use in courses on mass media and society, media studies, and media literacy. In addition to its use in coursework, it is highly relevant for scholars, researchers, and others interested in how the media influence the personal lives of individuals.
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Dr. Mary-Lou Galician is a media literacy advocate who lectures and consults nationally and internationally. She is frequently interviewed and cited by the mass media and is Head of Media Analysis & Criticism in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication at Arizona State University, where she created the popular course, Sex, Love, & Romance in the Mass Media. A former newspaper columnist, public television producer/director and nighttime talkshow host, and national marketing and advertising executive, she earned her doctorate in 1978 from Memphis State University (now University of Memphis), with a clinical residency in Human Values & Medical Ethics from University of Tennessee Center for the Health Sciences. She was the University Fellow in Broadcasting at Syracuse University (M.S., 1969) and a Conolly College Scholar at Long Island University (B.A., 1966), and she was named a national 2005-2006 AEJMC/ASJMC Journalism Leadership in Diversity (JLID) Fellow.
Dr. Galician is the author of Sex, Love, and Romance in the Mass Media: Analysis and Criticism of Unrealistic Portrayals and Their Influence, which was honored as a Recommended Resource the Center for Media Literacy, and a forthcoming tradebook for the general public, Dr. Galician’s Prescriptions© for Getting Real About Romance: How Mass Media Myths About Love Can Hurt You. The centerpiece of both books is her widely used Dr. FUN’s Mass Media Love Quiz©, which she has administered on national television. Her Dr. FUN’s Stupid Cupid & Realistic Romance® Awards for mass media portrayals of sex, love, and romance are announced each Valentine’s Day as a media literacy service. She is also the editor of the Handbook of Product Placement in the Mass Media: New Strategies in Marketing Theory, Practice, Trends, and Ethics, and she was guest editor of a special double issue of American Behavioral Scientist (September & October 2004) that she devoted to media literacy. Her research of television’s good news and bad news (“The American Dream & the Media Nightmare”) has been published in Journalism Quarterly, The Journal of Mass Media Ethics, and Southwestern Mass Communication Journal. She maintains two Web sites with media literacy resources: cronkite.asu.edu/drfun/ and www.RealisticRomance.com.
Debra L. Merskin is an Associate Professor and Communication Studies Sequence Coordinator in the School of Journalism & Communication at the University of Oregon. Her Ph.D. (1993) is from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communication, Syracuse University, and her Master of Liberal Arts degree (1989) is from the University of South Florida, Tampa. Her research appears in journals such as Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, The Howard Journal of Communications, Sex Roles, and Journalism Educator, and in book chapters in Growing Up Girls, Dressing in Feathers, and The Girl Wide Web. She is currently writing a book on race, gender and media (Blackwell). She teaches courses in communication and cultural studies, media and society, sex, love, romance, and media, and girl culture and the media.
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