COMMS 104G Advertising and Society

COMMS 104G | B&E, EMHSS and LC | Semester Two 2021 | City Campus | 15 points


Often dubbed the "art of capitalism", advertising has become one of the most profound and pervasive influences on our culture. It is a zone where art and commerce meet: where emotional appeals to self and spirit encounter the forces of economic rationalism. An informed perspective on advertising is therefore crucial to an understanding of the workings of contemporary culture. Advertising is all around us, yet rarely receives the critical attention paid to other media. In this course, you will learn to critically analyse examples of print, video and online advertising. You will be given tools to understand both the formal devices utilised by advertising to create meaning and how advertising shapes cultural notions of identity, rebellion, politics, social mobility, gender, race and ethnicity. The course will provide a theoretical and historical overview of developments in advertising history from the print advertising of the early 20th century to the use of social media, with a focus on how these developments both contribute to and reflect socio-cultural trends. It will also offer different methodological frameworks that will equip you to explain and analyse individual advertisements and their relationship to society at large. Please note that this course is not a practical course about developing or producing advertisements.

Restriction: FTVMS 110, 110G  

Student Feedback

'I loved this course and found it incredibly interesting. The workshops were always a joy to go to as the practical activities were both fun and educational. The lecturers were very helpful and always gave meaningful feedback which really helped us to understand what we could improve on. I also really liked hearing from people from the industry as it gave insight into what it is like to be a designer in the real–world.'

'I enjoyed looking at ad examples in lectures. It was a good break from the content and helped to put it into perspective.'

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