The encoding/decoding model is a theory about the different stages involved in creating and consuming media content. It was developed by Stuart Hall and contributed to the rise in prominence of cultural studies and critical studies of popular culture. Hall was among the first to incorporate aspects of the production (encoding) of media content as well as different ways of interpreting (decoding) that content into one theory. This entry discusses the development of the encoding/decoding model, the stages of the model, and the model’s ongoing influence.

Hall developed his encoding/decoding model in the 1980s. He touches on a fundamental paradigm of cultural studies: the question of meaning. When a media text is produced, a certain meaning is produced with it. The producers have meanings in mind ...

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