Media and film studies

Media, Publics and Protest

Module code: P4016
Level 6
30 credits in spring semester
Teaching method: Seminar
Assessment modes: Coursework

Social media have been at the heart of recent forms of protest both at home and abroad. This module aims to enable you to develop a critical understanding of the relationship between media, publics and protest. It will provide you with a conceptual framework and historical contextualisation with which to approach a key question in media studies - the construction of publics and counterpublics, and the relationship of media to democracy and democratic practice. The module begins by introducing a set of theoretical approaches to thinking about the public sphere; in the latter part of the course, you will be enabled collectively and independently to identify and research particular case studies, whether that be the role media play in revolution or political transition, in protests, demonstrations, petitions or riots, in hacktivism or culture jamming, or in cultural forms like satire and alternative media.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a coherent and specialist knowledge of theoretical texts relating to public sphere and media theory.
  • Identify, describe and evaluate leading contemporary scholarship related to the appropriation/adaptation of public sphere theory by media scholars.
  • Identify and analyse relevant case studies, orally and in written form, in the light of the theoretical perspectives offered by the course, and effectively argue a position.
  • Work effectively independently and collaboratively to research and present critical engagement with primary and secondary sources.