Week 6: Part 1: Angela Wheeler

The 22nd century is what could be seen as an overdone caricature of today: mass media is everywhere, and our obsession with constructing a social reality based off of our symbolic interactions with products (fueled by our consumer culture) will only have increased, and the catalyst is television. Just look at the five assumptions of cultivation analysis:

1. You don’t need an education to participate with television. Alliteration is already a growing phenomena — TV combines pictures and sounds, going off of what we are already preprogrammed to learn as children (how you learn to recognize what is “good’ and “bad’).

2. TV is the centerhub for learning culture. Look at how we dress, what we think is acceptable, what is going on in the world — it can all be found on a TV.

3. We use TV and the programs to create a base knowledge level. Similar to how we learn (as mentioned in part 1) we then build upon our symbolism based on what we see on TV. We see crimes, reality shows, different facets of humanity to base our assumptions of what is humanity.

4. TV is repetitive, and that repetitive nature is what ingrains in us the patterns of our lives. Our lives will become so morphed, almost Big Brother-esque to wait on the call of the technology surrounding us.

5. It is not a dramatic change. By 2020 we might see some small discernable change from the beginning of the 21st century. But as the 21st century changes into the 22nd and a new century begins, we will look as strange to the generations to come as we view our ancestors.

Mass media will be a constant, ever present facet of our life: it will be how our children learn, how we relay important information to one another, and how we see ourselves and our culture. Long story short: the media will influence us much more than we influence it.