SOCIAL JUSTICE AND THE MEDIA
TC357 (Unique No. 39685)
Spring 2004

 


Class: Monday, 3-5:30 p.m., CMA 5.136
Professor: Bob Jensen
Office: CMA 5.124D; phone 471-1990
Office Hours: Wednesday 8:30-11:30 a.m. and by appointment.
e-mail: rjensen@uts.cc.utexas.edu
web page: http://uts.cc.utexas.edu/~rjensen/home.htm


COURSE DESCRIPTION:
Everyone is for justice, just as they are for peace, freedom, and democracy. The question is: What kind of justice? Achieved through what kinds of systems and institutions? What constitutes a just society? Which political, social, and economic systems and institutions are most likely to produce justice? We will ask these questions and then move on to assess the role of mass media in social justice. What role can journalists and media institutions play in the quest for justice? Do contemporary commercial news outlets help or hinder the work of building a more just society?

COURSE REQUIREMENTS:
We will divide our time between discussions of readings, discussions of exemplary journalistic works on social justice, and presentations of student work.
Writing assignments include:
(1) a short essay that completes the sentence, “In a just society, ...” (2-4 pages, 5 percent of final grade);
(2) a short essay that completes the sentence, “In a just society, journalists would ...” (2-4 pages, 5 percent of final grade);
(3) an analysis of an exemplary journalistic work (2-4 pages, 15 percent of final grade);
(4) a scholarly paper on some aspect of social justice and the media, or a journalistic project that examines a question of justice in the world (50 percent of final grade).

The remaining 25 percent of your grade will be based on participation in class, assessed according to your: (a) familiarity with readings; (b) ability to hear and understand what others say; (c) ability to express yourself clearly; (d) ability to synthesize the thoughts of others to form new insights or questions; (e) ability to disagree constructively; (f) cooperation in building a stimulating and supportive intellectual atmosphere in class; and (g) attendance.

Important Note for Students with Disabilities: The University of Texas at Austin provides upon request appropriate academic accommodations for qualified students with disabilities. For more information, contact the Office of the Dean of Students at 471-6259, 471-4641 TTY.


TEXTS:

Paine, Thomas, Common Sense (any edition). Also available online at various sites, including: http://earlyamerica.com/earlyamerica/milestones/commonsense/text.html

Marx, Karl, and Frederick Engels, The Communist Manifesto (any edition). Also available online at various sites, including: http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1848/communist-manifesto/index.htm


READING PACKET: (at Longhorn Copies, 2520 Guadalupe, 476-4498)

Baker, C. Edwin, Media, Markets, and Democracy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), Chapter 6, “Different Democracies and their Media,” pp. 129-153.

Lummis, C. Douglas, Radical Democracy (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1996), Chapter 1, “Radical Democracy,” pp. 14-44.

Lippmann, Walter, The Phantom Public (New York: Macmillan, 1927), Chapter 2, “The Unattainable Ideal,” pp. 22-39; Chapter 3, “Agents and Bystanders,” pp. 40-53; and Chapter 14, “Society in Its Place,” pp. 155-172.

Huntington, Samuel P., “The United States,” in Michel Crozier, et al., The Crisis of Democracy (New York: New York University Press, 1975), pp. 59-118.

Gottlieb, Roger S., Marxism, 1844-1990: Origins, Betrayal, Rebirth (New York: Routledge, 1992), Chapter 1, ”Marxism: The Original Theory,” pp. 3-38; and Chapter 2, “Marxism: Basic Flaws,” 39-56.

Kellner, Douglas, “The Obsolescence of Marxism?” in Bernd Magnus and Stephen Cullenberg, eds., Whither Marxism? Global Crises in International Perspective (New York: Routledge, 1995), pp. 3-30.

Guerin, Daniel, Anarchism: From Theory to Practice (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1970), “Introduction” by Noam Chomsky, pp. vii-xx; and Chapter 1, “The Basic Ideas of Anarchism,” pp. 11-38.

Goldman, Emma, Anarchism and Other Essays (New York: Dover, 1969), “Anarchism: What It Really Stands For,” pp. 47-67.
Also available online at:
http://sunsite.berkeley.edu/Goldman/Writings/Anarchism/anarchism.html

Frye, Marilyn, The Politics of Reality: Essays in Feminist Theory (Freedom, CA: Crossing Press, 1983), “Oppression,” pp. 1-16; and “Sexism,” pp. 17-40.

Lorde, Audre, Sister Outsider (Freedom, CA: Crossing Press, 1984), “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House,” pp. 110-113.

Dworkin, Andrea, Letters from a War Zone: Writings 1976-1987 (London: Secker & Warburg, 1988), “I Want a Twenty-Four-Hour Truce During Which There Is No Rape,” pp. 162-171.

Dworkin, Andrea, Life and Death: Unapologetic Writings on the Continuing War Against Women (New York: Free Press, 1997), “Remember, Resist, Do Not Comply,” pp. 169-175.

Davis, Angela, Women, Culture, and Politics (New York: Random House, 1989), “We Do Not Consent: Violence Against Women in a Racist Society,” pp. 35-52.

Du Bois, W.E.B., The Souls of Black Folk (New York: Vintage, 1990/1903), Chapter 1, “Of Our Spiritual Strivings,” pp. 7-15.

Du Bois, W.E.B., Darkwater: Voices from within the Veil (Mineola, NY: Dover, 1999/1920), Chapter 2, “The Souls of White Folk,” pp. 17-29.

Winant, Howard, “Racism Today: Continuity and Change in the Post-Civil Rights Era,” in Paul Wong, ed., Race, Ethnicity, and Nationality in the United States: Toward the Twenty-First Century (Boulder, CO: Westview, 1999), pp. 14-24.

Lipsitz, George, The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: How White People Profit from Identity Politics (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1998), Chapter 1, “The Possessive Investment in Whiteness,” pp. 1-23.

Delgado, Richard, and Jean Stefancic, Must We Defend Nazis? (New York: New York University Press, 1998), Chapter 5, “Images of the Outsider,” pp. 70-92.

Parker, Pat, “For the white person who wants to know how to be my friend,” in Gloria Anzaldua, ed., Making Face, Making Soul/Haciendo Caras -- Creative and Critical Perspectives by Women of Color (San Francisco: Aunt Lute, 1990), p. 297.

Berry, Wendell, What Are People For? (San Francisco: North Point Press, 1990), "The Work of Local Culture," pp. 153-169.

Jackson, Wes, Becoming Native to this Place (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1994), Chapter 5, "Becoming Native to Our Places," pp. 87-103.

Sale, Kirkpatrick, Rebels Against the Future (Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1995), Chapter 9, "The Neo-Luddites," pp. 237-259; and Chapter 10, "Lessons from the Luddites," pp. 261-279.

Carey, Alex, Taking the Risk out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1997), Chapter 1, “The Origins of American Propaganda,” pp. 11-17; Chapter 2, “The Early Years,” pp. 18-36; and Chapter 5, “Reshaping the Truth,” pp. 75-84.

Bernays, Edward L., Propaganda (New York: Horace Liverright: 1928), Chapter 1, “Organizing Chaos,” pp. 9-18; and Chapter 2, “The New Propaganda,” pp. 19-31.

Bernays, Edward L., Public Relations (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1952), Chapter 14, “The Engineering of Consent,” pp. 157-168.

Carey, James, “The Communications Revolution and the Professional Communicator,” in Eve Stryker Munson and Catherine A. Warren, eds., James Carey: A Critical Reader (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1997), pp. 128-143.

Gitlin, Todd, The Whole World is Watching: Mass Media in the Making and Unmaking of the New Left (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1980), Chapter 10, “Media Routines and Political Crises,” pp. 249-282.

Eliasoph, Nina, “Routines and the Making of Oppositional News,” in Dan Berkowitz, ed., Social Meanings of News: A Text-Reader (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 1997), pp. 230-253.

Herman, Edward S., and Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (New York: Pantheon, 1988), Chapter 1, “A Propaganda Model,” pp. 1-35; and Chapter 7, “Conclusions,” pp. 297-307.

Herman, Edward S., The Myth of the Liberal Media (New York: Peter Lang, 1999), “The Propaganda Model Revisited,” pp. 259-273.

Herman, Edward S., and Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media, rev. ed. (New York: Pantheon, 2002), Introduction, pp. xi-lvii.

Hallin, Daniel C., The “Uncensored War”: The Media and Vietnam (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986), Chapter 4, “The ‘Uncensored War,’ 1965-1967,” pp. 114-158.

Kellner, Douglas, Media Culture (London: Routledge, 1995), Chapter 6, “Reading the Gulf War,” pp. 198-228.

Extra! Special Issue: Media and the Iraq War, June 2003.

 
SCHEDULE

WEEK 1: January 26
topic: what is justice?

WEEK 2: February 2
topic: what is democracy?
reading: Paine, Baker, Lummis

WEEK 3: February 9
topic: this is democracy?
reading: Lippmann, Huntington
*paper #1 due*


WEEK 4: February 16
topic: Marxism
reading: Marx/Engels, Gottlieb, Kellner

WEEK 5: February 23
topic: anarchism
reading: Guerin/Chomsky, Goldman
*paper #2 due*


WEEK 6: March 1
topic: feminism
reading: Frye, Lorde, Dworkin, Davis

WEEK 7: March 8
topic: critical race theory
reading: Du Bois, Winant, Lipsitz, Delgado/Stefancic, Parker
*paper #3 due*

Spring break: March 15-19

WEEK 8: March 22
topic: sustainability
reading: Berry, Jackson, Sale
*proposal for final project due*

WEEK 9: March 29
topic: propaganda
reading: Alex Carey, Bernays

WEEK 10: April 5
topic: professional journalists
reading: James Carey, Gitlin, Eliasoph

WEEK 11: April 12
topic: propaganda and professional journalists
reading: Herman/Chomsky, Herman

WEEK 12: April 19
topic: war coverage
reading: Hallin, Kellner, Extra!

WEEK 13: April 26
student projects

WEEK 14: May 3
student projects

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