All Academic, Inc. Research Logo

Info/CitationFAQResearchAll Academic Inc.
Document

An ecological psychology approach to the study of audiences
Unformatted Document Text:  ecological theory...9 cultural life. But it causes problems for researchers who hope that individual accounts of media experience will tell us much about the contribution that media have made to their psychological life. We are often interested in media use at the individual level, particularly in relation to life histories. For example, a student of mine recently conducted an interview with a middle-aged man who had an intense parasocial relationship with the German tennis star Steffi Graf (McFarland, 2002). The story of his parasocial relationship with Steffi Graf – beginning with an initial sexual attraction, before blossoming into a full-time preoccupation which eventually led to a meeting with the tennis star via her fan club – illustrates the use of narrative for structuring experience, in accord with various theories of narrative as psychological organising principle (e.g., Bruner, 1990; Murray, 2000; Sarbin, 1986). It is an example of media influencing behaviour in the long term, well beyond the level of the encounter, and this is where ecological psychology of the sort outlined by Reed (1996a) has limitations for media psychology. However, in the next section I will suggest a way of integrating narrative and ecological theory at the level of the audience-media encounter, by considering the role that narrative might serve in producing “cultural scripts” that provide audiences with the rules of interaction. Media encounters and narrative As Crossley (2000) and others have argued, narrative is about much more than providing a structure for organising and communicating information. To a considerable extent, the dominant narratives in any given culture exert a profound

Authors: Giles, David.
first   previous   Page 9 of 21   next   last



background image
ecological theory...9
cultural life. But it causes problems for researchers who hope that individual accounts
of media experience will tell us much about the contribution that media have made to
their psychological life.
We are often interested in media use at the individual level, particularly in relation to
life histories. For example, a student of mine recently conducted an interview with a
middle-aged man who had an intense parasocial relationship with the German tennis
star Steffi Graf (McFarland, 2002). The story of his parasocial relationship with Steffi
Graf – beginning with an initial sexual attraction, before blossoming into a full-time
preoccupation which eventually led to a meeting with the tennis star via her fan club –
illustrates the use of narrative for structuring experience, in accord with various
theories of narrative as psychological organising principle (e.g., Bruner, 1990;
Murray, 2000; Sarbin, 1986). It is an example of media influencing behaviour in the
long term, well beyond the level of the encounter, and this is where ecological
psychology of the sort outlined by Reed (1996a) has limitations for media
psychology. However, in the next section I will suggest a way of integrating narrative
and ecological theory at the level of the audience-media encounter, by considering the
role that narrative might serve in producing “cultural scripts” that provide audiences
with the rules of interaction.
Media encounters and narrative
As Crossley (2000) and others have argued, narrative is about much more than
providing a structure for organising and communicating information. To a
considerable extent, the dominant narratives in any given culture exert a profound


Convention
Convention is an application service for managing large or small academic conferences, annual meetings, and other types of events!
Submission - Custom fields, multiple submission types, tracks, audio visual, multiple upload formats, automatic conversion to pdf.
Review - Peer Review, Bulk reviewer assignment, bulk emails, ranking, z-score statistics, and multiple worksheets!
Reports - Many standard and custom reports generated while you wait. Print programs with participant indexes, event grids, and more!
Scheduling - Flexible and convenient grid scheduling within rooms and buildings. Conflict checking and advanced filtering.
Communication - Bulk email tools to help your administrators send reminders and responses. Use form letters, a message center, and much more!
Management - Search tools, duplicate people management, editing tools, submission transfers, many tools to manage a variety of conference management headaches!
Click here for more information.

first   previous   Page 9 of 21   next   last

©2012 All Academic, Inc.