ERIC Number: ED230950
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Aug-8
Reference Count: 0
Mass Communication as a Perspective on Human Communication: The Quandary of a Discipline.
Trapp, Mary E.; McLuskie, Ed
The empirical and critical traditions in mass communication inquiry are examined in this paper to determine if mass communication inquiry can provide a useful perspective on human communication. The paper first describes the development of interest in mass communication in the nineteenth century, then explains the empirical research tradition in mass communication inquiry, noting its evolution from stimulus-response to audience-oriented research under Paul Lazarsfeld's influence. The paper then explores the critical research tradition, and analyzes Lee Thayer's four levels of communication in terms of Denis McQuail's seven characteristics of mass communication by using critical literature. It concludes that the critical research tradition in mass communication can provide a provocative explanation of all levels of communication, thus calling into question the usefulness of such divisions within the communication discipline as interpersonal, organizational, or mass communication. (Author/FL)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Media History
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (66th, Corvallis, OR, August 6-9, 1983).