Tag Archives: Media

Sociology on TV – The 1970s

The first in this four part series took a relatively in-depth look at the very early years of the 1970s, examining the cultural shifts taking place in the context of Britain’s adaptation to a globalising economy.

I don’t teach it, but I imagine the show will be extremely useful for the SCLY1 culture and identity module.

The show starts with Heath’s success in getting Britain into Europe and uses this as context to chart the growth of UK consumer culture – pointing out that the number of people holidaying abroad doubled in ten years to the early 1960s.

There is also a good deal of coverage of shifting gender identities – as new masculinities become increasingly acceptable following the stardom of The likes of T Rex and Bowie. This spread across glass lines and there’s lots of nice images of working class lads with long hair accompanying this.

The show also deals with the influx of 25000 Asian Ugandans and their extraordinary efforts to get themselves jobs after arriving in the UK having lost everything to Amin’s regime. This is contrasted to the ‘send them back’ marches in the East of London

The episode finishes with Heath’s humiliation following the 1972 miner’s strike… The later being cast as an indication of Britain shifting right – the miners after all were simply demanding higher wages after a decade of wage stagnation so they could afford more than ‘a few pints at the weekend’ and actually take part in the UK’s new consumer dream

I think the show I watched was a relatively politically neutral historical analysis, although I’m not sure because it was hard to disentangle thought from the nostalgia – next week’ll be even worse as episode two will be dealing with my birth year – 1973 – And momentous though this event was somehow I think the show might kick off with something else…!?

Related blogs

By the show’s presenter – http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/tv/2012/04/the-70s.shtml


The media, youth and crime updates

youth-cultureHopefully next years bunch of sick, feral, thuggish, hearltess, evil, inhuman,  hoodie scum A2 students will find this post useful. If you do you’ll have to let me know by email because I won’t be teaching any face to face lessons to the under 18s in future because, frankly, I find the thought of being in the same room as you terrifying.  

The research below is  relatively recent (meaning recent by the standards of the five text books I’ve looked at – including the otherwise excellent Criminology by Chris Hale et al) on the media, youth and crime –

Some Content analysis from 2004 that demonstrated that….. one in three youth-related articles were about crime, and young people were only quoted in 8% of stories.

Also, 32% of stories featuring young people were related to crime or antisocial behaviour. Only 8% of stories related to positive achievements by young people.

Research from 2009 demonstrating that More than half of the stories about teenage boys in national and regional newspapers in the past year were about crime.

The word most commonly used to describe them was “yobs” (591 times), followed by “thugs” (254 times), “sick” (119 times) and “feral” (96 times). ¡Other terms often used included “hoodie”, “louts”, “heartless”, “evil” “frightening”, “scum”, “monsters”, “inhuman” and “threatening”.

Research by Women in Journalism (2009) suggesting that… as a result of the negative press, many young people were now more wary of boys of their own age.

“It seems the endless diet of media reports about ‘yobs’ and ‘feral’ youths is making them fearful of other teens,” it said. “Nearly a third said they are ‘always’ or ‘often’ wary of teenage boys they don’t know. The most popular reason for their wariness, cited by 51 per cent was ‘media stories about teen boys’ compared with 40 per cent who said their wariness was based on their own or friends’ bad experiences of other teens.

Nearly three-quarters said they had changed their behaviour as a result of this wariness. The most common change, cited by 45.7 per cent, was boys avoiding places where teenagers hung around. Others included dressing differently (14.2 per cent), and changing who they were seen with (11.9 per cent). “For much of the press, there is no such thing as a good news story about teenagers,” it added.

Not that any of you are actually reading this, you’re probably out harassing the elderly for kicks.