This book covers the key concepts central to understanding recent developments in media and communications studies. Wide-ranging in scope and accessible in style it sets out a useful, clear map of the important theories, methods, and debates.

The entries critically explore the limits of a key concept as much as the traditions that define it. They include clear definitions, are introduced within the wider context of the field and each one is fully cross-referenced, is clearly illustrated with relevant examples, and provides a guide to further reading and an index.

This book is an essential resource for students in media and communications and for those studying sociology, cultural sociology, cultural studies, and sociology of media.



Related concepts: criticism, postmodernism, sign.

‘Deconstruction’ is a term that entered everyday usage with remarkable speed. It was first used by the French philosopher Jacques Derrida in the 1960s and later taken up by feminist critic Gayatri C. Spivak and US literary critics such as Paul De Man and Geoffrey Hartmann.

In communication, social and cultural theory, the term is used to characterize Derrida's work as a project and a methodology, while, in everyday use, it is loosely taken to be a highbrow way of saying ‘critique’. Either way, the term does not actually meet with the approval of its author. In his essay ‘The time of a thesis: punctuations’, Derrida (1983: 44) claims that he has never approved of the word: ‘I use the word ...

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