The following list was created by Dr. Lesley Bogad to illustrate the foundational assumptions that this course operates under
Popular culture is not just a form of entertainment. The media play a critical role in teaching us about the world. Film, television, music, the internet, advertising, fashion and other forms of popular/digital culture shape the daily lives of all Americans whether we celebrate or resist their influence. We must learn to see the things we take most for granted, to analyze and interpret the media around us in order to understand how these things contribute to how we think about what is "normal", "natural," and "good." In this class, we will take the media seriously as an educating force
Youth is a culturally Constructed Category
Ideas about youth are dynamic, permeable and elastic. They change over time, across geographies, between communities. though we have constructed a "cumulative cultural text" of youth that is historically and socio-culturally familiar to us, race, class, ability, gender/identity, sexuality and size intersect and interrupt the category of youth. Youth and youth cultures will forever be resisting and/or responding to the codes, texts, and discourses of the dominant culture. We must know this in order to respond to it,
TEenagers are not some alien life form
We are/were all teenagers at some point in our lives. The person you are now is the same person you were then, albeit with new and different life experiences that shift and change your understandings and actions in the world. We do not "outgrow" our teenage identities. so, when we examine "youth" from the vantage point of adults, we need to resit the impulse to discuss it as thought it is something outside of us, something exotic and "Other." We will not talk about "those crazy kids" or refer to "teenagers" as some alien life form.