Week 2 Blog Post

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I found the discussion on Wednesday to be very engaging and was disappointed to not have had more time to argue what I thought or argue simply to create debate. I would argue that this commercial isn't "racist" so to speak, but more of a major group generalization. Our mostly Northern American understandings and impressions of Jamaican culture and ways of life (through television and music, mainly) is that they are easy-going, don't worry, and smoke a joint every now and then. If this is our understanding, and clearly this ad knows this as well, it is merely satire. At one point in the commercial, someone says, "Isn't he from Minnesota?" so they are not trying to perceive him as actually being Jamaican, but rather trying to perpetuate the 'good feelings' associated with the Jamaican people, as being the same kind of feeling if you ride in their VW car. So, yes, this commercial reinforces a stereotype- but I would not say it's racist. On a different note, I actually enjoyed the second reading for this class, Introduction to Media Literacy. I'm already familiar with some of the concepts introduced, so it was reassuring to read something for class and not feel completely lost. One of the most frustrating things about media (p.286) are that people without power, privilege, and money often don't have access to media, can't often contribute, and often turns these people invisible. I agree that our media system needs to change, so that these groups of people are not left out. Because when there is this type of imbalance economically, the issue of equality will not be addressed, and therefore never get better. Everyone deserves to be a functioning member or society with equal access to media.

1 Comment

Good post! I agree with everything your saying! I wish we had more time to discuss this as well because it seemed people really got into the discussion and it would have been interesting to keep it going. I too did not think the concept of the commercial was racist. I think a lot of people are quick to throw out the race card when dealing with media. I like how you pointed out the fact that the coworkers in the commercial ask "Isn't he from MN?" Your right I think the ads goal was to link the good feeling associated with Jamaicans and driving a VW car. I thought it was amusing to watch, and that is what Super Bowl commercial usually aim to do. Something funny, catchy and unforgettable. I too enjoyed the reading this time. I recognized some of the concepts from other communication classes which made it a good read. I also liked diving in to more in depth topics and getting a better understanding of media. Power and the media go hand in hand, you can tell where the power comes from just by watching certain stations or shows. It is sad to think of the people that lack power don't have access to the media.

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This page contains a single entry by Abby published on January 31, 2013 6:26 PM.

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