Cultivation Theory

Topics: Reality television, Television program, Television Pages: 19 (7009 words) Published: February 21, 2013

Course:| Mass Communication and Theories (COM1101)|
Lecturer:| Ms. Elillarasi a/p Kuppusamy|
Topic Title:| Cultivation Theory |
Name List:| Afnan Shahrudin| J12010731|
| Charlotte Andrea a/p Joseph Ratnadurai| J12011213|
| Fatema Jangbarwala | J12011032|
| Siti Sophie Ismail| J12011246|

Definition of the Theory3
History of the Theory3
Key terms in cultivation analysis6
Literaure Review8
Case Study11
History of Kevin and Colleen12
Accumulated Data12
Application of theory13

Definition of the Theory
Gerbner’s cultivation theory states that television has become the main source of storytelling in today's society. It is the study of long term effects of television to society. This conduct of research is mainly carried out in America to analyze the audience there who are mainly categorized as couch potatoes. Cultivation theory also shows how people react after watching a particular program/movie on the television because cultivation theory is mainly based on how the television cultivates or moulds the mindset of society. It is also said that those who watch four or more hours a day are labeled heavy television viewers and those who view less than four hours per day are light viewers based on Gerbner’s research. Heavy viewers are exposed to more violence and therefore are affected by the Mean World Syndrome, it is an idea that the world is worse than it actually is and people tend to be more afraid of living their life’s peacefully.  According to Gerbner, the overuse of television is creating a homogeneous and fearful populace amongst the world today. History of the Theory

Cultivation theory states that television ‘cultivates’, or promotes, a view of social reality that is inaccurate but that viewers nonetheless assume reflects real life. Cultivation theory (sometimes referred to as the cultivation hypothesis or cultivation analysis) was an approach developed by Professor George Gerbner, dean of the Annenberg School of Communications at the University of Pennsylvania. He began the 'Cultural Indicators' research project in the mid-1960s, to study whether and how watching television may influence viewers' ideas of what the everyday world is like. Cultivation research is in the 'effects' tradition. Cultivation theorists argue that television has long-term effects which are small, gradual, indirect but cumulative and significant. Black Et. Al. used the metaphor of stalagmite theories to suggest that “media effects occur analogously to the slow buildup of formations on cave floors, which take their interesting forms after eons of the steady dripping of limewater from the cave ceilings above.” One of the most popular theories that fits this perspective is cultivation theory.”

They emphasize the effects of television viewing on the attitudes rather than the behaviour of viewers. Heavy watching of television is seen as ‘cultivating’ attitudes which are more consistent with the world of television programmes than with the everyday world. Watching television may tend to induce a general mindset about violence in the world, quite apart from any effects it might have in inducing violent behaviour. Cultivation theorists distinguish between ‘first order’ effects (general beliefs about the everyday world, such as about the prevalence of violence) and ‘second order’ effects (specific attitudes, such as to law and order or to personal safety). Cultivation research looks at the mass media as a socializing agent and investigates whether television viewers come to believe the television version of reality the more they watch it. Gerbner and his colleagues contend that television drama has a small but significant influence on the attitudes, beliefs and judgements of viewers concerning the social world. The focus is on ‘heavy viewers’. People who watch a lot of television are likely to be more influenced...

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