This is the first of two lectures dedicated to the performative dimension of celebrity communication strategies. The lecture focuses on issues of media productions. The theoretical approaches informing current professional practices are compared with more historical analyses of mass media production, notably Debord’s notion of spectacle. The question asked is, how much of Debord’s theories we can use today, given the entirely different context of production of the media and communication industry?
Lecture slides: M84MC.06 7 Nov 2012
Homework – due 14 Nov 2012
1. Assignment one
Pick 3 examples of Debordian spectacle. What are their intended functions? How can we read them? How do can we use them? How can detournement work?
2. Assignment two
By now, each group should have picked the celebrities you want to compare, and which specific aspects of their strategies you want to examine. Now you need to decide which approaches and tools you want to invoke to help with your comparison. As a group, go over the materials and approaches we discussed so far, and weigh their pros and cons. Write your conclusions on the blog. E.g. “We think that adopting perspective X will help us highlight characteristic A of our celebrities. However, perpective X is not taking into account this or that factor…”
Turner, G. (2004) Understanding Celebrity. Ch.2 “Production” Turner.2004.Celebrity-Production