Primary and presidential election coverage, writing homework help

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For this paper, I’d like you to take a look at the topic below and analyze the ways in which the “media” has driven the narrative:

  • Primary and presidential election coverage. Explore the ways in which media coverage dictates not only what candidates get seen, but what topics are even considered valid for debate. From who is selected for news programs and the debates themselves to the relationship between political advertising and TV revenue, there are many ways to illustrate who and what ideas are favored by a given outlet.

In other words, answer this: why do the media gatekeepers have an interest in presenting these issues in the way that they do? Is it for entertainment? For profit entirely? For social influence? And how do they accomplish those goals through use of the media?

It is important, especially in a paper like this, to take the appropriate critical stance on the issue you select. This is not a persuasive paper where you are supposed to argue why, for example, guns should be widely available or why policemen should wear body cameras. Your job instead is to look at the ways in which these issues are presented through the filter of the media. How does the presentation of these stories affect the way that the audience responds on all sides? Are these issues presented through the lens of a Propaganda Model? And why?

This paper should be six pages long, double-spaced, 12-point font with one additional page of works cited. You will be expected to use at least four legitimate, scholarly references and include quotes from those sources within your paper. All of these issues have been analyzed thoroughly in the media, so you should not have a hard time finding articles. The more difficult part will be finding sources that are academically structured and not opinion-based or biased writing.

To that end, you will be required to use the following book as your primary source. You will want to read all of most of that book, and I will expect to see ideas and direct quotations integrated from whatever book you choose.

Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander (available here, video source here)

  • This is one of the few, well-researched, well-informed books that dares to make the all-or-nothing argument about television: that it is, by its very nature, a medium designed for passivity and autocratic control, and there’s nothing that can be done to reform it. The author is a former advertising executive and brings that perspective into his analysis of exactly what television (or, more broadly, visual entertainment) really is doing to our minds and motivations. Let’s just say that it’s not pretty, and he confronts a wide array of physiological, psychological, and emotional effects of prolonged viewing. While most of the other books on the list argue passionately for the restoration of their respective media to a place of greater esteem, this book argues that it’s better for humanity to abandon this television experiment entirely.

Format: MLA

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