(pp. 4, 6). The tie between the medium as a
heaven and hell is as powerful as it was in
Arnheims forecast seven decades earlier.
We are perhaps witnessing a transformation of
TV, rather than its demise. Television started in
most countries as a broadcast, national medium
dominated by the state. It is being transformed
into a cable and satellite, international medium
dominated by commerce, but still called tele
vision. A TV like screen, located in domestic
and public spaces, and transmitting signs from
other places, will probably be the future.
In many ways, television has become an
alembic for understanding society. There is
intellectual and political value in utilizing the
knowledge gained from sociology to assess this
transformation and intervene in it, especially if
we borrow from the right traditions. The three
basic questions asked by students of the media
Will this get me a job? Is television bad for
you? How do we get that show back on?
have direct links to the relationships between
text and audience, as understood through eth
nography and political economy. The respective
answers are: If you know who owns and reg
ulates the media, youll know how to apply;
The answer depends on who is asking the
question and why; and If you know how
audiences are defined and counted and how
genre functions, youll be able to lobby for
retention of your favorite programs.
In summary, analyzing television requires
interrogating the manufacture and material his
tory of TV sets; creation, commodification,
governance, distribution, and interpretation of
texts; global exchange of cultural and commu
nications infrastructure and content; and eco
nomic rhetoric of communications policies.
This can be done by combining political econ
omy, ethnography, and textual analysis into a
new critical sociology of TV.
SEE ALSO: Audiences; Culture; Genre;
Media; Media and Consumer Culture; Media
and Globalization; Media Literacy; Mediated
Interaction; Popular Culture
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The term terrorism derives from the Latin verb
terrere, to cause to tremble or quiver. It
began to be used during the French Revolu
tion, and especially after the fall of Robespierre
and the Reign of Terror, or simply the
Terror, in which enemies of the Revolution
were subjected to imprisonment, torture, and