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Annotated Bibliography Worksheet

Example Reference

Citation in APA format

Goings, T. C., Salas-Wright, C. P., Howard, M. O., & Vaughn, M. G. (2017). Substance use among Bi/multiracial youth in the United States: Profiles of psychosocial risk and protection. The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, 44(2), 206-214. https://doi.org/10.1080/00952990.2017.1359617

(this is a proper source citation in APA formatting)

Key findings (200 words)

This article presents findings from a study that examined the issue of substance use in bi/multiracial youth. The authors suggest that bi/multiracial youth participate in substance use more frequently than monoracial youth. The study had several significant findings. Bi/multiracial youth engaged in higher use of tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and other illicit drugs more so than other youth of color. They also engage in higher levels of marijuana use than white youth. However, findings also revealed that bi/multiracial youth were involved with more psychosocial protectors – such as being raised with a stronger anti-drug message and having parents more involved in their lives. Many also experienced lower levels of psychosocial risk than monoracial youth, such as peer pressure.

The authors suggest several important implications from these findings, especially in terms of designing prevention and intervention efforts aimed at bi/multiracial youth to address substance abuse. These implications take on increased importance as the population of bi/multiracial youth has been increasing significantly over time. They also suggest that these programs focus on enhancing psychosocial protections for these youth, rather than only focusing on protective factors. The authors conclude by mentioning two model programs as being exemplary with this approach – The Strong African American Families Program, and Communities That Care.

(This example of key findings gives a detailed description of the major findings and implications from the study. It clearly represents one of the social sciences. It also meets the 200-word length)

How do you know that this is a credible/scholarly source?

This article was found in a peer-reviewed academic journal from the UMGC library.

(This article was from a peer-reviewed scholarly journal from the UMGC library – using peer reviewed sources helps to verify credibility)

Assess the usefulness of this resources to your project. How will you use the findings for your final project? If you found that this resource was not useful, please discuss why. (100 words)

My topic is on substance use among adolescents. This article addresses several issues that are relevant to my topic from a psychological viewpoint, including psychosocial protections and risks in the context of substance use. It also discusses a population that has been less focused on in many of the articles I have read. Since the population of bi/multiracial youth is increasing in society, this article will help to ensure that I look at this issue from the perspective of different demographics of youth.

(This description reiterates the topic and fully describes how the article will be relevant from the viewpoint of one of the social sciences. It gives a valid reason of how the article will be useful for the final project. It also meets the required word count).

Reference 1

Citation in APA format

Key findings (200 words)

How do you know that this is a credible/scholarly source?

Assess the usefulness of this resources to your project. How will you use the findings for your final project? If you found that this resource was not useful, please discuss why. (100 words)

Reference 2

Citation in APA format

Key findings (200 words)

How do you know that this is a credible/scholarly source?

Assess the usefulness of this resources to your project. How will you use the findings for your final project? If you found that this resource was not useful, please discuss why. (100 words)

Reference 3

Citation in APA format

Key findings (200 words)

How do you know that this is a credible/scholarly source?

Assess the usefulness of this resources to your project. How will you use the findings for your final project? If you found that this resource was not useful, please discuss why.(100 words)

Media and the representation of Others

Elfriede Fu¨rsich

Contemporary mass media operate as a normal-
ising forum for the social construction of reality.
They are important agents in the public process
of constructing, contesting or maintaining
the civic discourse on social cohesion, integra-
tion, tolerance and international understand-
ing. Moreover, the media’s power to steer
attention to and from public issues often
determines which problems will be tackled or
ignored by society. Only those issues that gain
publicity have the potential
to make people think about
social and political ramifica-
tions beyond their immediate
experience and arouse politi-
cal interest.

Over centuries, the mass
media – starting with news-
papers – have played a
central role in defining and illustrating the
nation-state in Europe and the Americas. In
post-colonial countries, the media were used
as important tools in nation-building efforts.
Often the media formed a mediated national
identity in limited ways by defining the bound-
aries of a community considered to be part
of a nation and by excluding minorities as
‘‘Others’’. Contemporary geopolitical constella-
tions add another component to the mediated
discourse of the Other. Intensifying globalisa-
tion has led to an increasing connectedness
between economies and political entities and
a need for people to know about the world.
A major dimension of globalisation is the
voluntary and forced mobility of people. Busi-
ness travellers, tourists, migrants and refugees
constitute a growing number of people on the

move. At the heart of the matter is the struggle,
often played out in the media, over defining and
situating the Others amongst ‘‘us’’.

This report will evaluate what role the mass
media have played in constructing this dis-
course. In what ways do the media promote or
hinder a positive outlook on cultural diversity?
Based on a review of the scholarly debate on the
role of media in representing Others, I identify a
set of current obstacles (both in media systems

and in media content) to
fair media representations.

This review provides
the foundation for a set of
conclusions and strategies
that can lead to a frame-
work for rethinking the
relationship between the
media and cultural diver-

sity. While every effort will be made to
contribute examples from a wide variety of
countries, the main academic statements are
based on mass communication scholarship in
the USA, the UK and other English-speaking
countries and, to a lesser degree, other European
countries and non-western countries. This
reflects my scholarly training and area of
expertise as a German media scholar working
at a US university with some experience of living
and teaching in India.

This inquiry into professional practices and
media content in a globalising world intends to
promote mass media that bring about a new
civic discourse within and across national
boundaries towards a more democratic global
media environment, fair media practices and
more critical media use.

Elfriede Fu¨rsich is Associate Professor of
Communication and Sociology at Boston
College. She currently is a visiting profes-
sor at Freie Universita¨t Berlin. Her
research focuses on media globalisation
and mobility and their relationship to
culture and civil society.
Email: [email protected]

ISSJ 199 r UNESCO 2010. Published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd., 9600 Garsington Road, Oxford, OX4 2DK, UK and 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148, USA.

Current trends in studies of
media and representation

In this section, I outline diverse approaches to
studying the representation of Others. I define and
explain the use of the concept, ‘‘representing the
Other’’ and establish its relevance to actual
journalism practice and media content. In addition
to my own scholarship in this area, I highlight
important contributions from scholars in cultural
studies, journalism studies, media sociology,
anthropology and social linguistics. Overall, the
scholarship in this area dealing with the media
representations of the Other is eclectic and mostly
disconnected. My contribution here is to link
various interdisciplinary approaches to a cohesive
argument about the current relationship between
media representation and cultural diversity. Before
delving into this topic, I give a brief overview of
past and current scholarship on media’s effect on
society and how representation became an impor-
tant concept for understanding media.

Do the media have any impact?1

While it is commonly assumed that the mass
media have an effect on their audiences, this
question has been of central concern throughout
the history of academic mass communication
research. Maybe surprisingly, there have been
long-lasting disputes as to whether the mass
media indeed have such an impact. The earliest
academic writing on media before the Second
World War was informed by mass society theory
and the fear that western democracies could be
easily destabilised by extremist political frac-
tions and the emerging fascist movements
through their successful employment of media
propaganda through newspapers, movies and
radio. US intellectuals (for example, Walter
Lippmann), on the one hand, understood the
media to be a dangerous propaganda tool that
needed to be controlled by a technocracy for
democratic use. Neo-Marxist cultural theorists
(for example, the Frankfurt School) arriving
from Europe, on the other hand, saw the media
as a dangerous part of the cultural industry that
often only provided mass escapism and rein-
forced a repressive status quo. Both approaches
united a strong sense that the media had a direct
and immediate effect on a passive and easily

manipulated audience. This idea is now often
called the ‘‘magic bullet theory’’.

However, with the establishment of mass
communication research as an empirical social
science at the end of the Second World War,
scholars struggled to measure any such media
effects. Neither laboratory experiments by media
psychologists nor large-scale surveys on the
impact of the media on voting or consumer
decisions found significant behaviour or attitude
effects. This research led to a radical rethinking of
media impact in what is now called the limited-
effects paradigm in US mass communication
research from 1940 until the 1970s. The media
were considered to influence people only indir-
ectly. Instead, psychological predispositions, peo-
ple’s socioeconomic characteristics, cognitive
selective processes and the influence of interperso-
nal contact were all assumed to hinder any direct
impact by the media. At most, the media only
reinforced existing values, attitudes and opinions.

The rising household penetration of televi-
sion sets and increasing television viewing in the
USA and other developed countries during the
1960s and 1970s, however, triggered new waves
of scholarship that tried to explain the everyday
observation that television seemed to create
changes in the political process (for example,
campaigning and elections). Moreover, the
proliferation of problematic visual images (espe-
cially violent ones) caused concern amongst
parents and educators. The latter concern
seemed to become especially urgent after educa-
tional psychologists established that people can
learn behaviour and change their attitudes after
watching television or films (that is, social
cognitive theory). Several major research
streams during the late 1960s then pushed the
question of media effects into new directions.
For example, agenda-setting theorists estab-
lished the central role of the media in defining
the issues that the public accepted as important.
Spiral-of-silence theorists argued that the media
can contribute significantly to a climate of
opinion that can obfuscate the general popula-
tion’s real attitudes on an issue while stopping
people with dissenting views from speaking up.
Cultivation theory, moreover, argued that tele-
vision had little influence in the short term.
Instead, life-long immersion in television seemed
to lead viewers, especially heavy viewers, to take
television’s constructed reality as actual social

114 Elfriede Fu¨rsich

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reality (for example, viewers starting to see the
world as a very violent and dangerous place).

The latest wave in the social-scientific
paradigm of mass communication research,
called ‘‘framing research’’, has further helped
to establish that the media play a stronger role in
defining and shaping topics of public debate.
Since the 1990s, this stream of research has
tended to show that the media play a role in
defining how audiences understand an issue
of public concern. Importantly, this stream
of research also theorises on the capacity of
governmental and non-governmental lobbies to
influence the media’s coverage of events.

All approaches that assign the media a
stronger impact than the limited or moderate
effects school have received intense criticism from
established scholars, and to this day methodolo-
gical and theoretical issues are a matter of great
debate. However, one can argue that, currently,
many social-scientific scholars of mass commu-
nication ascribe to the media a central or at least
an important role in contemporary society when
it comes to defining and explaining issues of civic
concern (for more details on the history of social-
scientific mass communication research see Baran
and Davis, 2006).

In addition to the social-scientific paradigm
another important approach to media studies
has developed during the last thirty years. As a
reaction to the limited-effect paradigm in com-
munication scholarship, a new cultural-critical
paradigm emerged in the 1960s, first in UK and
about 15 years later in the USA. This scholar-
ship has been informed by the humanistic
traditions of cultural criticism, semiotics and
linguistics as well as by cultural anthropology
and political economy. Its impetus was to
counter the idea that the media have no impact;
thus, early scholarship often states that the
media are institutions that reinforce a hegemo-
nic status quo. Soon, however, audience-focused
research in this group influenced by the inter-
disciplinary cultural studies movement, coun-
tered this idea by establishing the dominance of
active audiences and their ability to appropriate
or even resist dominant messages. A decades-
long debate ensued amongst scholars using this
paradigm as to whether the media, as part of
cultural industries, reproduce and maintain
the status quo and control public discourse
in problematic ways or whether audiences

successfully negotiate or even resist cultural
domination. While some traces of these debates
persist, many scholars using the paradigm of
cultural critique now understand the media to be
significant and often problematic cultural forces,
limited by their need to maximise profit and
appeal to mainstream audiences, while audi-
ences actively and independently accept, appro-
priate and, at times, even undermine dominant
discourses (for more details on cultural-critical
media studies see Durham and Kellner, 2001).

Another important research area further
prioritised audience activity in this equation by
championing media literacy as a strategy for
countering the problematic impact of the media
and popular culture on individuals, especially
children and adolescents.

What is representation?

It is within this cultural-critical paradigm of
media studies that scholars created and studied
the idea of representation. This concept helped
scholars to move beyond understanding media
messages as simply a portrayal or reflection of
reality. Instead, representations are embedded in
the 24-hour saturated media stream and estab-
lish norms and common sense about people,
groups and institutions in contemporary society.
The media create representations as central
signifying practices for producing shared mean-
ing (Hall, 1997). The representations are con-
stitutive of culture, meaning and knowledge
about ourselves and the world around us.
Beyond just mirroring reality, representations
in the media such as in film, television, photo-
graphy and print journalism create reality and
normalise specific world-views or ideologies.
This view understands the concept of ideology
as a hegemonic, normalising force in contem-
porary societies, as developed by cultural
theorists (Eagleton, 1991; %iz?ek, 1989).

Cultural media scholars are especially
interested in representations as constructed
images that carry ideological connotations.
Since representations can produce shared cul-
tural meaning, problematic (that is, limited)
representations can have negative consequences
for political and social decision-making and can
be implicated in sustaining social and political
inequalities. Following the cultural turn in many
humanistic disciplines and the seminal influence

Media and the representation of Others 115

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of semiotic and post-structural theory (see
Fu¨rsich, 2002b), representations of Others
(ethnic, racial, gender or sexual minorities,
international Others) have become a focal point
for critical-cultural media studies. Many cultur-
al studies scholars inside and outside mass
communication programmes followed Edward
Said’s (1978) work on the historical contingen-
cies of problematic western ‘‘Othering’’ to use
media texts such as newspaper articles, television
programmes or advertisements to show evidence
of this Othering. Later, Said’s concepts were
often challenged. His tendency to establish new
binaries (the west versus the Orient) while
rebuking others has come under special attack
(for a critical, if irreverent evaluation, see
Varisco, 2007). Shohat and Stam (1994), in
particular, provided an important extended
approach to analysing Eurocentric media repre-
sentation by advocating what they call a ‘‘radical
pedagogy of the mass media’’ (p. 356). This
strategy allows for a critique of problematic
representation in the media and popular culture
while using emancipatory moments in popular
culture for ‘‘an indispensable re-envisioning of
the global politics of culture’’ (p. 359).

Current challenges to fair
media representations of

The overwhelming tenor of the research on the
mediated representation of Others is sceptical
about the ability of contemporary media to
portray cultural diversity. This section explains
the central concerns brought forward by this
scholarship. Two forms of Othering will be
addressed: firstly, media representations of mino-
rities as Others in a nation (that is, ethnic,
linguistic, racial, religious or sexual minorities);
secondly, the media’s role in explaining interna-
tional relations, conflict and culture. Here I
evaluate the limitations of international reporting
as well as other types of journalism (such as travel
journalism) about Others outside the borders.

The media representations of Others
in a nation

The media representations of minorities
have been a central concern for media scholars

in the cultural-critical paradigm (for example,
Castaneda and Campbell, 2006; Dines and
Humez, 2003). For more than 25 years this
research has explained the role the media play in
upholding problematic stereotypes. Especially in
an environment increasingly saturated by visual
communication the sheer propensity of imagery
works to maintain, confirm and recreate proble-
matic representations ad infinitum.

Cultural media scholarship has often
demonstrated that news and entertainment
media stereotype non-white, non-elite groups
and other minorities by excluding them from
coverage or by offering a limited range of
representations. Media imagery across various
platforms, from news journalism to fictional
movies, has often portrayed minorities as
different, exotic, special, essentialised or even
abnormal. It is especially striking that the
repertoire of representations of diverse mino-
rities that contemporary media offer is often
linked to historically established racist imagin-
aries such as in colonial literature and science
(for example, slave imaginary or Orientalism).
Moreover, as post-colonial, race, and gender
studies have shown, the long history of visual
mass media production that started with the
invention of film more than 100 years ago has
created a stockpile of mediated representation
types that are constantly recycled in a variety of
media outlets. Even if the contemporary media
seem to avoid outright stereotypical portrayals
and racial or ethnic defamation, genre conven-
tions (such as the inflexibility of character
development in sitcoms), production practices
(such as the use of news conventions under
deadline pressure) or economic pressure (for
example, the drive by commercial TV networks
to attract a large mainstream audience) continue
this problematic construction (for example,
Entman and Rojecki, 2000). Even shows and
media content that openly tried to counter-
stereotype prevalent negative representations by
presenting opposing roles and characters were
often seen as limited approaches still linked to
earlier problematic versions that were often
broadcast in tandem with them (for example,
Gray, 1995). In addition, new media technolo-
gies have tremendously increased channel capa-
city and stimulated niche marketing and
narrowcasting. This development has resulted
in more media outlets for earlier silenced

116 Elfriede Fu¨rsich

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minorities (for example, the US network BET
for African–American viewers; easy access to
satellite television or Internet publications from
‘‘home’’ for migrants). Yet critics have argued
that these new opportunities further separate
audiences in new media ghettos and even release
the remaining mainstream media from construc-
tively engaging with minorities.

The reasons for the persistence of traditional
representation are threefold. Firstly, the ubiquity,
saturation and repetitiveness of the mass media
seem to reinforce the longevity of these represen-
tations. Secondly, profit-driven commercial med-
ia industries that aim at large mainstream
audiences were often blamed for being unable
to initiate more complex representations to
undermine problematic ones. Thirdly, the media
were seen as being too closely aligned to the elites
in society (or directly controlled by elites) to be
interested in a change of the status quo. Even
scholars sympathetic to the idea that the media
are a cultural forum (Newcomb and Hirsch,
1983) that has the potential to introduce ideas
for progressive social change tended to find
that, at best, the media’s role was to push the
envelope of inclusion at times but ultimately to
mainstream (that is, contain) a new socio-
political situation (such as the coverage of the
emancipatory struggle of western women since
the 1960s).

Lately, a debate has emerged as to whether
digital technology and the Internet can under-
mine traditional repressive systems of represen-
tation by adding new outlets for representation.
In addition, growing audience fragmentation
caused by the increasing number of channels
available to audiences in nearly all countries of
the world may also diminish the impact of
negative representations. However, since repre-
sentation speaks to a sustained image delivered
across media channels and outlets rather than to
individual problematic media portrayals, long-
established representations may survive across
genres and media platforms.

Media representations of
international Others

In this globalising world it is also important to
explain how cultural diversity across nations is

portrayed in the media. Two main areas of
concern are highlighted here. Firstly, I summar-
ise traditional problems of international report-
ing; secondly, I introduce some of my own
research to delineate how the current intensified
level of globalisation aggravates problematic
representation of Others by journalists.

Traditional problems of international

Ever since Galtung and Ruge’s (1965) seminal
study on news selection in Norwegian news-
papers it has been established that journalists
tend to favour cultural proximity by preferring
stories that are close to their own and their
audiences’ perceived cultural background. Com-
bined with a preference for conflict, a lack of
ambiguity and a focus on elite nations, this
makes for a very limited international news
selections. Gans (1979) called this news value
ethnocentrism, explaining that US journalists
report any event from an American angle.
Ample research on international news coverage
since then has shown that western reporting,
especially of the developing world is almost
exclusively triggered by crises, catastrophes and
natural disasters – thereby re-emphasising an
image of the developing world as is chaotic
beyond relief and in constant need for support
by the west. International reporting tends to
follow – to index (Bennett, 1991) – the agenda of
its current government’s foreign policy doctrines
and relies on elite national sources to explain
international events.

Scholars who understand journalists not
just as information selectors and gatekeepers but
as narrators and producers of culture have
further outlined the limited parameters of the
story of the Other told in journalism. Lule
(2001), for example, explains in a case study on
The New York Times coverage of Haiti how
negative news myths such as ‘‘the Other World’’
are invoked over long periods of time to
negatively frame an underdeveloped nation.
Another persistent news frame, the Cold War
(Entman, 2004) and its related filter anti-
communism (Herman and Chomsky, 1998) have
governed international news reporters’ dichot-
omising news outline for almost four decades
and seems to be more resilient (Carragee, 2003)
than many scholars had expected.

Media and the representation of Others 117

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In some of his later work, Edward Said
(1981) suggested that Orientalism, as a historic
and hegemonic discourse for addressing and
defining the Other produces effects not just in
literature and in art but also on contemporary
news coverage of the Middle East. When
extending this idea to the news filter anti-
terrorism (Chomsky has recently updated his
propaganda model), the anti-Muslim and anti-
Arab aspects of this frame seem to revive and
extend the historical oriental Other.

Overall, journalism researchers often
emphasise that traditional journalism is not up
to the task of covering the complexities of
international events. The biggest accomplish-
ment of print journalism over the years has been
to help define the nation as an imagined
community (Anderson, 1991). Similarly,
national TV newscasts have been essential for
connecting an audience to its nation (Gans,
1979). Yet journalism’s biggest failure has been
that this national integration was often created
in the negative – by suppressing regional, local
and minority audience interests and access
(Rantanen, 2005), and by Othering anyone
outside national borders.

New problems in a global media

If we agree that while globalisation as a historic
process has intensified over the last 25 years,
then what is the story of globalisation to be
covered? Globalisation is a complex issue; it is a
political story, a business story and an environ-
mental story, but it is also a human rights and
social justice topic, in addition to the always
needed human interest story. In my work I have
tried to touch on many of these aspects (for
example, Fu¨rsich, 2002c); I highlight here some
of my findings as starting points for further

In a series of studies I have moved beyond
national media outlets to explore a type of
factual media content that is produced for global
audiences. This led me to investigate media
production on a global level, starting with my
study of Discovery Communication International
and its cable outlet Travel Channel by examining
the informative potential of travel programmes
produced for global television. I analysed three

internationally-popular travel shows called
Lonely Planet, Travellers, and Rough Guide.
Situating these three shows within their global
production and distribution demonstrates the
limitations of this type of programming.

As global media products they present a
culturally ambivalent text. As they need to work
for an international audience, these shows could
widen narrow representations of the Other and
counter the reliance of traditional television
news journalism on narrow demarcations of
national(istic) distinctions. These shows could
break the problematic narrative of traditional
foreign reporting, which has concentrated on
crises and catastrophe, by presenting a more
positive image of the Other. Because these shows
focus on travel, they could exemplify the
complex representation work on either side of
the tourism exchange, thus in due course
challenging cultural dichotomies in such repre-

Yet I found that travel journalism is
fundamentally structured by the search for
difference (as the ultimate motivation of tourism
in general), which results in the perpetual replay
of manufacturing, celebrating and exoticising
difference. These discursive strategies rely on
essentialising cultural groups. Often the shows
present a sanitised or static idea of multicultural
understanding devoid of political connotations.
In the worst case, this strategy leaves locals (as
tourism workers and interviewed ‘‘representa-
tives’’ of a country) only as essentialised types:
nameless, voiceless or poorly translated. All
shows ultimately hide the privileged and proble-
matic situation of all tourists, travel show
producers and the tourism industry in general
when packaging culture as a commodity. Their
narratives, which stress individual pleasure and
personalised travel as programmes that have to
work across borders, often neglect the broader
political, social and economic problems of
contemporary tourism and international rela-
tions in general (for more details see Fu¨rsich,
2002a, 2003).

My concerns are echoed in a more recent
argument doubting the capacity of the national
media or border-crossing programming in an
increasingly globalised media environment to
reflect an enlightened and humanistic cosmopo-
litism in the media (Rantanen, 2005; Waisbord,

118 Elfriede Fu¨rsich

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Overall, three main reasons hinder