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Essay On Popular Culture And Media

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Popular culture and media are concepts deeply intertwined, as media often acts as the driving force behind the ever-strengthening phenomenon of a universal culture. Assisted by modernisation, the importance of media and popular culture in contemporary society has shifted, demonstrating that the concept of modernity is integral to an understanding of popular culture and media. Furthermore, popular culture and media are interrelated with the concepts of power and agency, as they are fundamental players in society (Habermas, 1989). The concept of ‘celebrity’ is also interweaved in this. Whether popular culture and media are positive or negative forces in contemporary society is debateable. Some perspectives argue the connective nature of media, claiming that it has enabled globalisation. However, other perspectives demonstrate that media and popular culture have spread detrimental problems in society.

Media, as an increasingly global sensation, cannot be understood or explained unless viewed through the lens of modernity. Indeed, the spread of popular culture can similarly be attributed to modernisation throughout the developed world. Significant technological and social advances have accompanied modernisation, resolutely altering the role of media and popular culture in contemporary society. However, its impact is widely debated.
Positively, modernity has promoted globalisation, therefore increasing the importance of media. Individuals previously segregated from the world have more opportunities to unite with it, particularly through the Internet and television. Beena Sarwar (2008, p185) argues the television gave those who could not read agency to be informed about national and global occurrences. She further indicates that tel...

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...n blamed on violent music and movies that were characteristic elements of popular culture at the time. The widespread availability of such destructive popular culture, enhanced by modernisation, arguably promoted destructive and antisocial behaviour in adolescents, subsequently resulting in events that drew media and public attention (Scharrer, 2003, p51).
Therefore, an understanding of popular culture and media, particularly its benefits and downfalls, cannot be achieved without a comparison to modernity and the process of modernisation. It is evident that popular culture and media, in regards to modernisation, act as positive and negative influences on contemporary society. Although the concepts are attributed as influencing constructive societal change, it can also be argued that the models are responsible for many aspects of society that need to be altered.
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