Sample Exam 3
Write on both the following questions.
1. Analyze in-depth at least 5 different specific advertisements from print or other media. Find fallacies and other persuasive devices. Analyze images as well as words. For example, you might talk about why you think this ad appears in this publication. If people are pictured, why these people? What kinds of plausible alternative people or lifestyles are not shown? Any messages about race, class, and gender?
Any techniques to ingratiate by making the reader feel smart or hip? Any in-jokes (e.g., humorous references to common experiences or cultural figures – TV shows, toys, video games, movies, etc. – that would be known only to persons of a certain age or class or gender)? Any irony or self-parody (e.g., acknowledgement within the ad that it’s an ad, or reference to other ads)?
Does the publication contain complementary copy?
Be sure your answer reflects familiarity with fallacies, videos and the Steinem article. If you analyze ads from magazines or newspapers, please attach them (or copies). If you analyze TV or other ads – e.g., on billboards or in movie theaters – describe the ads completely, including transcripts of any dialog or voice-over.
2. To what degree should one believe the news on commercial media? Be sure your answer reflects familiarity with assigned reading, lectures, and videos, but especially THE ASSIGNED READING for Part 6. If you like, you may also include material from films such as Roger and Me, The Big One, Wag the Dog, and Bob Roberts; but be sure to demonstrate familiarity with THE READING. If you don’t agree with the reading, lectures, videos, etc., give your own (hopefully non-fallacious) arguments in defense of commercial media.