Review: “Alan Taylor’s penetrating study examines how the U.S. media shape the public discourse and, consequently, American foreign policy…Taylor identifies how cross-ownership is used to reinforce this ideological 51852_cover_xxlmessage – specifically, how film is used to reinforce the legitimacy of another medium: news broadcasting…Taylor takes a historical approach to the evolution of U.S. corporate media, from the beginning of the U.S. broadcast system in the 1920s to the media coverage of the Iraq war, paying particular attention to the events of 9/11. The author declares: “The question to ask is: have we invited a press to witness a war, or have we created a war to prove that this freedom of expression is possible?…Taylor employs elements of a number of approaches – Rhetorical resp. Dramaturgical Perspective, and certain key elements of the Auteur theory – sometimes moving from one approach to another. He establishes a historical overview, generating a chronology that demonstrates the development of the concentration of ownership n the U.S. media…One of the objectives of the book, then, is to encourage a more active citizenry: a “wakeful political literacy” that promotes critical understanding of the current state of American mainstream media. The book also examines the pedagogical implications of this ideological function of the U.S. mass media., calling for a curriculum that encourages critical thinking skills…Altogether, this is a very thorough, penetrating study that furnishes a valuable perspective into the American media system” (Art Silverblatt, Dept of Media Literacy, Webster University, Missouri, 2006).

The book is HERE

JACOBEAN VISIONS: Webster, Hitchcock, and Google Culture (pp. 201)


Abstract: “This stridently interdisciplinary study builds on recent postmodern advances in theatre, film, and media studies – jv-bigin areas of identity, gender, and narrative – to argue for a realignment of cinema’s own dissembling urban ironist, Alfred Hitchcock, within the Jacobean dramaturgical lineage. In defence, the study juxtaposes revitalized texts, such as Webster’s The White Devil (1612) and Hitchcock’s newly restored films, primarily Vertigo (1958), that, since the 1980s, have powerfully resonated as totemic limit texts with present day audiences. Comparative analysis of such titles builds to a contextual consideration of the vertiginous trends in new media technologies that have also, since the 1980s, beguiled users to fashion themselves as cyber observers, rhetors, Avatars and performers within the contemporary Jacobean panspectron environment.”

Review from Screening the Past is HERE

2017:  FILM MAVERICKS IN ACTION: New Hollywood, New Rhetoric, and Kenneth Burke (pp. 334).


Abstract: “The book’s ambition is to uniquely yoke familiar histories of New Hollywood with aspects of critical theory that, since the 1950s, have embraced advances in the New Rhetoric as pioneered by literary theorist, philosopher, social analyst and educator Kenneth Burke (1897-1993). The study tracks the career arcs of Hollywood film directors Peter Bogdanovich, Martin Scorsese, Michael Cimino and Francis Ford Coppola whose productions are regarded as Burkean perspectives by incongruity. This analysis is contextualized within an overview that, from the 1920s to the present, considers Hollywood as a “languaged industry” that is grounded in Burkean principles of Order, identification, hierarchy, courtship and ambiguities of substance. The project is designed to serve the interests of colleagues and students in Rhetorical Theory, Film Education, Creative Writing, American Studies, Production Studies, and Film and Media Studies.”

The book, published in January 2017,  is available HERE



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