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July 1994


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Allan Siegel <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 8 Jul 1994 01:41:00 CDT
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As someone previously posted, there are many elements involved in this
 discussion. 1- domestic violence and 2- TV coverage of the O.J. Simpson case.
 Certainly these elements interact, but it might be useful to separate them for
 the moment. Unfortunately, the Mr. John Thomas ill-informed diatribe, does
 little to truly advance the discussion in regards to domestic violence; but
 there have been a number of other comments that I think do move things along.
Perhaps IUve missed something, but what I find wanting is a developing discourse
 in regards to TV representation of this event and the way the networks frame
 the issues.  The networks have a great deal of difficulty in sustaining a
 meaningful public dialogue around issues that are vitally important. Another
 arena of discourse is safely marginalized in the realms of academia and lost in
 a zone of a comfortable obscurity. Occasionally these realms intersect when
 RexpertsS are needed to enhance the truly abysmal state of broadcast
The networks create media events such as town hall meetings in order to sustain
 an illusion of democracy. As they fetishize the Simpson case <under the guise
 of news reporting> the networks further trivialize the social context of
 domestic violence and its victims. Could you imagine what would happen if a
 fraction of the time and money spent on this case was devoted to a coordinated
 national discussion on health care reform?
Allan Siegel