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Posted: November 24th, 2022


Media and Race
Assessment Information:
• CW1 Essay (1,500 words)
In Block One of Media Cultures, we commenced our ongoing exploration of how self-perception, and
our perception of others, are a consequence of social relations, informed by the value judgments we
make. Moreover, we have suggested that the question of media power and how it is experienced – how
it is felt – is central to how we understand the fluid formation of our identities.
In order to demonstrate your grasp of the concept of identity as we have defined it, you are required to
write a 1,500-word essay in which you explore how a component of your own identity has been shaped
by mediated representations. You should therefore start your research by identifying at least one of the
following categories, all of which are premised on the construction of social groups:
Gender Language
Social Class
You may select more than one of these categories, and in doing so you will want to explore how they
intersect (for example, the concept of ‘hybridity’ may be central to your account).
In addressing this task, you will need to demonstrate how this social process of identity formation is not
necessarily one of conscious choice. This is where our debate about media power is central – you may
wish to argue, for example, that one facet of your identity is very much determined by the perception
other social groups have of you and how that perception is habitually framed by media representations
to the extent that it becomes an unconscious way of seeing. You should therefore identify at least one
media representation that supports your argument (e.g., film; broadcast; music video; newspaper
coverage; news item etc.)
Task summary:
Select at least one category and at least one related media representation.
In writing your essay you should draw on the reading material we have presented you with thus far in
order to underpin your analysis with reference to scholarly debates regarding the concept of identity.
Each reading you reference (you are not restricted by a maximum number) should be evidenced in your
bibliography and, where appropriate, citation in the form of direct quotation or paraphrasing.
Finally, although short in word length, this is a formal academic essay, so please refer to the module
guide in terms of study skills guidance.
All assignments should conform to the general standards of presentation: legibility, spelling, syntax,
paragraphs, introduction, main body and conclusion. The title of the piece of work should be shown
clearly on the first page, all pages should be numbered and properly referenced, and the work must
include a full bibliography of all sources referred to. Essays should be word-processed using a suitable
size font (12) and with adequate margins to allow for assessors’ comments. You should record the word
length of your essay at the end of the work.
Useful reading resources and more:
• Buckingham, D. (2008). “Introducing Identity” in: Buckingham, D. (ed.) Youth, Identity and
Digital Media. Cambridge, MA: MIT.
• Additional reading: ‘Introduction’, pp 1 – 12 in Hodkinson, P. (2011) Media, culture and society.
An introduction. London: Sage
• Stansfield, T. (2019). ‘In his words: Akala’s path to political awakening’. Available at:
• ‘Media, Race and Ethnicity’, pp 221 – 238 in Hodkinson, P. (2011) Media, culture and society. An
introduction. London: Sage
• Woodward, K. (1997). Identity and Difference. London: Sage. Note: this reading is quite long but
serves as an excellent resource to return to repeatedly.
• Tomlinson, J. (2011). Cultural Globalization Reconsidered. Available at:
• Woodward, K. (1997). Identity and Difference. London: Sage. Note: this reading is quite long but
serves as an excellent resource to return to repeatedly.
• pp 201 – 217 “Media, Community & Difference: From Mass Stigmatisation to Grassroots Identity
Groups in Hodkinson, P. (2011) Media, culture and society. An introduction. London: Sage
• Hall, S. (1997/2013), ‘’The Work of Representation’ in Stuart Hall, Jessica Evans & Sean Nixon,
Representation (2nd edition). London, California, New Delhi & Singapore: Sage.
• ‘Media texts as arrangements of signs’ pp.60 -70 in Hodkinson, P. (2011) Media, culture and
society. An introduction. London: Sage. KORTEXT (Kortext is a digital textbook platform)
• The Maiden with the Snake. Interpretations of a Print Advertisement’ pp. 167-180 in Berger, A.
A., (2009). Media Analysis Techniques. Thousand Oaks, CA/ London: Sage.
• Goffman, E. (1979). Gender Advertisements. London: Macmillan. Available at Gender
Commercials, page 24 – 47Available at
• ‘Media texts as arrangements of signs’ pp.60 -70 in Hodkinson, P. (2011) Media, culture and
society. An introduction. London: Sage. KORTEXT
• Gauntlett, D. (2008) Chapter 6 ‘Foucault Discourses and Lifestyles’ Media, Gender and Identity.
London: Routledge.
• Finding Fanon – is a series of three films by artists Larry Achiampong and David Blandy; inspired
by the lost plays of Frantz Fanon (1925-1961), the two artists negotiate Fanon’s ideas, examining
the politics of race, racism and the post-colonial.

Media and Race


Course Tutor Institution City Date Course Tutor
The Media and Racial Profiling
Racism is defined as any action, institutional structure, or attitude that causes an individual or a group of people to appear inferior because of their race or ethnic background. Discrimination, bias, and disempowerment in the context of race have existed for a long time in many areas of the media mainstream, including entertainment, advertising, and even news broadcasts on television. Broadcasting in its early years, which date back to the introduction of television in the year ’39, sparked a national debate about racial discrimination in the United States, which was quickly followed by the formation of an outspoken civil rights organization dedicated to racial equality. It became clear at that point that, with the introduction of extremely complex programs of entertainment, advertising, and news reporting, inequalities in regard to race would continue to manifest themselves in these mediums. During the early years of television, the majority of the people who worked in entertainment programs, advertising, and news were white. Similar to several other white color jobs in the United States, and in a similar vein, the values and opinions held by this powerful group were revealed in media that was produced. It was at this point that the opinions of those who were involved in the industry were invited to express themselves on how media content was selected, created, and displayed. The advertisement for the globally sold goods featured a picture of white people, allowing the colored American to only advertise goods that were sold to Black people in the United States.
The films of that era did not portray a realistic image of African Americans in their entirety. The Black American people were portrayed as thieves, ignorant, savage, rapists, and interlopers in early films such as the Tarzan Series (1932) and Birth of Nation (1915), which were both made in the United States (Luther et al., 2012. p 59). In addition, the misrepresentation of early films, such as Colored Americans being messed around by Caucasian people who dyed their skin to appear black, conveyed a very heavy symbolic meaning to the audience. These connotations implied that people of color lacked the ability to stage themselves and that Blacks lacked the talents necessary to satisfy a personality that can only be created by Caucasians, respectively. The attainment of these responsibilities by the Caucasians conveyed a hidden meaning to the audience, namely, that the Caucasian group is the preferred group and the only group capable of participating in the mainstream media environment. Because these videos were effective and provided divided society with a glimpse into the lives of people of color that was previously only available to African Americans, the dangerous representation of people of color presented a difficult challenge. People of color struggled to act for their beliefs, ideas, identities, and stories during the early stages of media and film because Caucasians were in charge of the entertainment industry and chose which figures of Colored Americans would be conveyed to the public.
During the early years of the media industry, black people were underrepresented in this field. Blaxploitation, a film from the early 1970s, featured African-Americans as main characters. The films were intended to demonstrate to the community that Colored Americans could be protagonists in a story and be successful in overpowering the discrimination based on their race that was imposed on them by the Caucasian group through their use of color. These films were managed by African-Americans, despite the fact that the film contracts were dictated and held by organizations such as the Motion Picture Association of America and Colombian Pictures, both of which were controlled by whites. The films in the Blaxploitation genre were not well received by the majority of the audience, who were predominantly white, resulting in their failure to generate significant profits. The cessation of production of these films indicates that the Caucasian group has maintained control over the media. In his book Akala’s Path to Political Awakening, Stanfield claims that Akala was looked down upon and called names by white people simply because he was half-white and half-African (Stansfield et al., 2019). This clearly demonstrates that Caucasians believe they are superior to other races in terms of perceived superiority. At the beginning of the media’s existence, white people were the subjects of attention. Several of them were immigrants from Europe who concentrated on mass media in order to better understand the people in their current state. Women of color and men were treated as “alternative viewers,” who were not in sufficient numbers to have an impact on the message that was being broadcast to the majority of viewers by the media.
One example of the media’s influence on racism is the reporting of crime in social media, which has become contentious as a result of the impression it gives as a result of racial bias disagreement. The stories that were chosen to be broadcast have been criticized for the way they portray racial populations, and even for the way racial populations are highlighted in crime broadcasting. According to a study that looked into discrimination in the television news when it came to portraying criminals in Chicago, criminals who were black were always elucidated by showing a photograph of the culprits being moved around in manacles while Caucasian police officers in uniform held their hands, according to the study. There were no images of white criminals with handcuffs around their wrists or in their arms. Additionally, according to the findings of the investigation, media depictions of lawbreaking and crime, as well as global reactions to such depictions, play a significant role in maintaining and creating the stereotype of people of color as dangerous and criminals. It is possible to argue that the availability of the typecast that focuses on people of color as criminals is the result of unfair reporting. This includes informational and visual content that is more geared toward colored wrongdoers than it is toward Caucasian wrongdoers, as well as subjects that are more focused on Caucasian ill-treatment.
The idea that African American men are always the targets of the discrimination discussed in the media is strongly associated with the discussion of discrimination in the media. Despite the fact that members of the community who identify as Black Americans are at risk of being discriminated against by the media. According to the findings of the investigations, men who are African-Americans receive a disproportionate amount of attention from the media. Colored men are disproportionately affected by biased reporting, and they are also more likely to be influenced in ways that are at odds with their cultural perspectives. Caucasian Americans learn about Africans or Black Americans through descriptions depicted in the media, rather than through personal interactions with these people. Unfortunately, these descriptions are also shared by a number of African Americans. According to the findings of the research, Black Americans who are exposed on television and in the media are likely to convey a very low sense of self-worth.
Racist microaggressions are yet another manifestation of racism in the modern world. While contemporary reporters do not publicly support discrimination on the basis of race, they do use sound and visual cues to stereotype their viewers. Approximately 450 reports of criminal activity were evaluated as part of an investigation conducted by Entman. A video or photograph had been taken, and the race and the name (which was specifically addressed to whites and Blacks) had been communicated. About two hundred and fifty criminals were white, accounting for seventy-two percent of all criminals. Ninety of the perpetrators (or 28% of the total) were African-American. He came to the conclusion that if the names of the Black Americans in the picture were not given, it implied that the pictorial demonstrations could be integrated into a larger group that was not differentiated, in which case the stereotype of the Male Black American was dangerous. The unidentified person’s portrayal represents the typecast. The name is insignificant because the person represents a well-known group of people who are not white population (Stansfield et al., 2019).
The whites considered themselves to be more superior than any other race in world. Even if the British assume to be superior, they will never be. The great young individuals from humble origins, and specifically young men of color, are familiar with the obstacles that are will unsurprisingly appear before them; they will go over them with a lot of ease. The young black Americans should always strive to work hard even if they are looked down upon or even when they are discriminated against. Akala worked really hard and achieved the success he strived for even after being discriminated against by the white. He did not hope at any given point. That is the reason why he is giving hope to the young African Americans to work very hard in school and pursue their dreams with more efforts in order for them to be more successful in life despite the bias, discrimination, and superiority of the whites in the country they are in.
In America there is discrimination even in the kind of education a black child is ljkely to get. He attended a poor black school in the land where he was taught how the world works. They were taught the nature of the world not to make them biased and discriminative but to make them understand how tough the world can sometimes be and how tough they ought to be in order to succeed in that tough world. In America, there is a clear distinction between the type of school the Blacks should attend and the one that should be attended by the whites. The white’s superiority can still be felt in the world today. Some of them do not embrace the equality of all human beings in spite of gender, color, and even religion. Even though Akala was not fully African American, he still faced a rough time due to the white’s discrimination and bias; they did not see him as one of them. Right now, Akala leads a luxurious life in spite of how he grew up. He went through a lot in his childhood life until he felt like the law of the land does not apply to him the same way it applies to other people. He finally states that there are several reasons to be hopeful.
In conclusion, it is of significance to state that media discrimination and bias are the signs of the ineradicable spots remaining in the community from past ordeals. These marks are nuanced and extensive to the current public climate that reports for many decades, social, cultural, and political movements. Some of them are continuing. It is also important to state that broadcast media has a significant influence on the environment since it impacts the values, belief systems, and how individuals relate to one another. The message that the media conveys to the civic with respect to a specific racial group turns out to be the means of understanding the images, behaviors, and expectations of other people. When white actors portray people of color as wrongdoers, aggressive, and dangerous, then the public will understand the blacks to have the traits they are being said of them. Not just part of the black population but all black people. This is the belief the broadcast media restates continually. The media also affects the feeling individuals may have towards male Black Americans. The media is an organization; hence it affects the which are often based on the race of seme individuals. Thus, the media strengthens discrimination and racism through the use of racial micro-assault in the content section and viewers.
Luther, C., Ringer Lepre, C., & Clark, N. (2012). Diversity in U.S. Mass Media. Malden: Wiley- Blackwell.
Catherine A. Luther
Associate Professor and the Associate Dean for Academic Programs in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and was once a television news producer for American and Japanese television networks.

Stansfield, T. (2019). ‘In his words: Akala’s path to political awakening’. Available at: class-in-the-ruins-of-empire
Rapper, intellectual and writer, Akala is one of the most incendiary voices of his generation. In his new book, Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire, he debunks the British myth of meritocracy. Here, he shares his intellectual journey shares his intellectual journey

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