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Television and Citizenship - Essay Example

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Television and Citizenship

With these theories combined, we can now progress to a real-life example of these theories in action. Audiences who watch the television show The Biggest Loser are introduced to a panel of morbidly obese contestants at the beginning of each season. As the weeks progress, the contestants and their professional trainers work to transform their bodies into healthier versions of themselves. Within the context of the show, the areas of neoliberalism transcend to audiences through the idea that these contestants are chosen and represent extreme cases of unhealthy living habits. While a plausible view, thanks to the constructs of neoliberalism, viewers of The Biggest Loser may forget the mass epidemic that obesity has within this country. Through combining this viewpoint with the democracy game of television, The Biggest Loser can help the political movement of working to help the nation gain greater awareness about the dangers of obesity. With the publicity of this show shedding light on the growing problem of obesity among Americans, the political realm can capitalize on the popularity of this movement and work with health institutions to create new awareness campaigns and programs to combat obesity in society. By understanding how these tangible possibilities can stem from society’s enthrallment with popular television, it is clear that these theories have pros and cons about them. While it is good that a high degree of followers for a particular television program can spur social change, it is also dangerous that neoliberalism can make it seem a social issue is less widespread than it truly is. Question 2b According to Stuart Cunningham, the public sphere is a symbiotic place for free debate within the constraints of society. The...
According to Stuart Cunningham, the public sphere is a symbiotic place for free debate within the constraints of society. The purpose of a public sphere is to create an environment where issues, regardless of social class or community can be discussed. It is because of these public spheres that ‘public sphericules’ exist. Allowing for smaller sub-groups or diasportic communities to discuss issues pertaining to their needs, public sphericules can create awareness for issues that need to be brought to the center of the national forefront. While public sphericules are the catalyst for an increasing debate in community-specific issues, there can be difficulty in relating these specialized ideas back to the mainstream of national public thought and opinion.
An example of this theory in action can be seen in the movie, “Slumdog Millionaire.” The plot of this film concerns a young Indian man who was raised in the slums of the county. With the chance of a lifetime to be on the show, “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” the young man wins the monetary prize and finds himself with more money than he could ever imagine. In translating this idea to public sphericules, we can see where the smaller community affected by the poverty in Indian culture strives to gain awareness for the problems this country is facing in regard to the abject living conditions of a large population of its citizens. Once this film became popular throughout America and entered into the national public sphere, society’s awareness. ...Show more


The author of this essay "Television and Citizenship" aims to discuss a few questions relative to such popular communication concept as television, particularly in the US and in Europe. The paper also reveals television impact on the society…
Author : beahanantwan
Television and Citizenship essay example
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