socialisation: The Mass
Media and Religion
1.1 -In traditional societies, families would
learn norms and values from religion.
Some sociologists claim that a process
of SECULARISATION has taken place
and religion is now a less significant
agency of socialisation. However, even
those who do not attend religious
ceremonies regularly may still see their
religion as important.
1.2 -Religion is also, Christianity in
particular, part of the NATIONAL
CURRICULUM. It is taught to all children.
Although church attendance may be
declining, there are many faiths present
in our culturally divers society.
2 Mass Media
2.1 -When learning the norms and values of
our society we experience reality through
interacting with people, but we also
experience mediated reality through the
2.2 -The mass media are all forms of communication that
are produced for consumption by a large audience. It
has been claimed that we live in a MEDIA
SATURATED society and we are exposed to media
products from a very young age. This is why we need
to consider the importance of the mass media in the
3 -For many years there has been a debate
about the effects of the media on socia
behaviour, much of this research has
focused on children as they are seen to be
more vulnerable to the effects of the media.
Some researchers see the media having a
direct effect on the behaviour of children,
while others see children as a media literate
audience who can easily tell the difference
between fantasy violence and real violence.
4 Gaye Tuchmann et al (1978) - FEMINIST
4.1 -Feminists have long been concerned about
how women are presented in the media. Gaye
Tuchmann et al suggests that women are
SYMBOLICALLY ANNIHILATED in the media.
This may result in girls and women learning that
their roles are less important than those of men.
A more recent controversy in terms of the role
of the mass media in the socialistaion process
is that the media provide unrealistic images of
the female body and this has been linked to the
increase in eating disorders.
4.1.1 Symbolic Annihilation-a situation in which
women are under-represented in the media
and where their roles are seen as limited or
negative in comparison with those of men.
5 -Media images of ethnicity have also
been criticised for portraying minority
ethnic groups in negative ways. Minority
ethnic groups are often victims of
MORAL PANICS in the media.
5.1 Moral Panic-exaggerated media
reporting of a certain action or social
group. This group come to be seen as
a threat to the rest of society.