Universität Wien

124070 VO Culture, Society and the Media (2020W)

Powerful Images: Representing Race, Class and Gender in the Media

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 12 - Anglistik


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


Language: English

Examination dates


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

Teaching Mode: Online Only

Update on 19 Oct 2020: Current health regulations allowing, the final exam will take place as a physical on-site
exam. The final decision on exam mode will be communicated in January 2021.
The lecture itself remains online only.

Thursday 08.10. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 15.10. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 22.10. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 29.10. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 05.11. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 12.11. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 19.11. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 26.11. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 03.12. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 10.12. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 17.12. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 07.01. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 14.01. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 21.01. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital
Thursday 28.01. 08:00 - 09:30 Digital


Aims, contents and method of the course

Teaching Mode: Online Only.
A video-lecture of 60 minutes will be available on moodle on Monday evening of each week. You can watch this video before the lecture's time slot or on Thursday morning, 8-9am.
At 9am each Thursday, we will then have a 30-minute slot of synchronous Q&A on the moodle platform. You can post questions (also beforehand) which will then be answered and discussed online.

Lecture Topics:
The media shape and influence our images of the world, ourselves and other people. In this sense, they are part of our cultural identity, and they can exert incredible power. However, we can also use media products to change and challenge identities and social expectations. The lecture uses material from English, American and Anglophone Media like television series and movies, advertisement, music videos, graphic novels, or news media to show how three central building blocks of identity - race, class and gender - are represented. We will discuss how the media can reinforce stereotypes, but equally how media products and their use and re-use can help to uncover harmful and discriminatory social practices and identities. In a nutshell, we will deal with the multiple connections between culture, media and society.

This lecture will familiarise students with the intersectional study of identity, specifically with the role of race, class and gender. This includes issues like racism, sexism and other types of discrimination as shown but also challenged by media products.
Students will learn how to approach different mediations (e.g. comics, movies, internet clips, television, advertisement) and their representations of race, class and gender; students will be asked to read and be presented with key theoretical texts by Michel Foucault, Stuart Hall, Judith Butler, Richard Dyer, and others.

In the lecture, you will have the opportunity to provide material of your own. The examples that we discuss will therefore depend, at least in part, on the interests of the participants.

Assessment and permitted materials

Final written exam of 60 minutes in multiple-choice format.

Update on 9th Nov 2020:
If the exam has to be held online, the first sitting will take place on 28th January 2021. If the exam can be held on-site, the date for the first sitting will be 1st February 2021.

Update on 19 Oct 2020: Current health regulations allowing, the final exam will take place as a physical on-site
exam. The final decision on exam mode will be communicated in January 2021.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

You can get 100% in the exam. 50% are needed to get a passing grade.

Marks in %:
1 (very good): 87,00-100%
2 (good): 75,00-86,99%
3 (satisfactory): 63,00-74,99%
4 (pass): 50,00-62,99%
5 (fail): 0-49,99%

Examination topics

The lecture is a multi-media based course (Internet, audio and video presentations). For the final written exam, the relevant materials are:
a) the online lectures with 60 minute audio and lecture slides (available on moodle each week),
b) the readings of each session which are available on moodle.

Reading list

Among others, we will work with the following reading material:

Connell, Raewyn. Gender: In World Perspective. Cambridge: Polity, 2009. 1-12, 94-114.
Dyer, Richard. White. London: Routledge, 1997. 1-40.
Gary Day. Class. New Critical Idioms Series. London and New York: Routledge, 2001. 1-18.
Glover, David, and Cora Kaplan. Genders. New Critical Idiom Series. London and New York: Routledge, 2000. ix-xxxiv.
Hall, Stuart. “The Spectacle of the Other.” Representation: Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices. Ed. Stuart Hall. London: Sage, 1997. 239-279.
Loomba, Ania. Colonialism/Postcolonialism. London and New York: Routledge, 2005. 7-22, 91-106.
Nash, Jennifer C. “Re-thinking Intersectionality.” feminist review 89 (2008): 1–15.
These as well as additional titles or relevant excerpts from them will be available on moodle at the beginning of the semester.

General critical introduction recommended for participants:
John Storey (2012/1997). Cultural Theory and Popular Culture: An Introduction. Sixth Ed.

Association in the course directory

Studium: BA 612, EC 125, EC 126; BEd 046
Code/Modul: BA07.1, EC Cultural and Regional Studies 1; BEd Modul 10
Lehrinhalt: 12-4070

Last modified: Fr 12.05.2023 00:16