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The Political Economy of Communication 2nd ed. Edition

2.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1412947015
ISBN-10: 1412947014
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Editorial Reviews


Vincent Mosco's heavily revised and thoroughly updated Political Economy of Communication is a masterpiece. (It) is the one single indispensable book that all media students and scholars need to read to understand this vital and growing area of research
Robert W. McChesney
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Mosco has done all students of communication a great service by updating this book. It captures, summarizes and illustrates an important set of voices and arguments, key interlocutors in the ongoing effort to construct a critical theory and analytic of contemporary communication and culture
Lawrence Grossberg
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The Political Economy of Communication is a contemporary classic of media studies. Now, in this comprehensively revised second edition, Vincent Mosco, among the leading media scholars of our or any time, brings his searing insights and crystal prose to bear on the latest issues and debates of the field… An indispensable resource for researchers, activists, and students everywhere. It is a classic all over again
Toby Miller
University of California, Riverside

The new edition is updated throughout with an expansive bibliography and insights into the intersections between political economy and other disciplines such as sociology, geography, cultural studies, public choice theory and science and technology studies, among others...Mosco’s The Political Economy of Communication, second edition, is a very important resource for scholars, providing a critical and updated review of the field while proposing a forward-looking vision. The book highlights fresh potentials and the continuous relevance of the political economy approach to the study of communication. I would also recommend this as a textbook for graduate courses.

International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics

About the Author

Vincent Mosco is Canada Research Chair in Communication and Society and Professor of Sociology at Queen's University, Canada

Product Details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd; 2nd ed. edition (May 7, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1412947014
  • ISBN-13: 978-1412947015
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.6 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,169,084 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By doomsdayer520 HALL OF FAME on October 26, 2004
Format: Paperback
Mosco is one of the leading authorities on the academic body of knowledge that gives this book its title. It's qualified for the expansive title because Mosco has created a convenient and authoritative text on the theoretical side of the field. An informative introduction describes the field of political economy in communications, and its place in theoretical history. This is followed by a useful and probably groundbreaking deconstruction of the field into the sub-theories of commodification, spatialization, and structuration, while the book ends with useful tie-ins connecting the theories to associated fields like cultural studies. These theoretical concepts are fascinating for those learning about the structure of mass communications, and its effects on politics and the economy.

The problem with this book is that the field of political economy (and not just as applied to communications) is meant to lead to real world activism and results, which can develop from an understanding of base theories. Such potential is mostly missing from this book. Other more worldly authors in this field such as Ben Bagdikian and Robert McChesney (dealing with the loss of localism due to media ownership patterns, and the affects on popular democracy from media power structures, respectively) are recommended as examples of the powerful real-world possibilities of the political economy of communications. Instead Mosco sticks with windy and obtusely written theoretical contortions that are unlikely to have much usefulness outside of academia. An example of this can be seen early in the book: "The specification of mutual constitution grows out of the relationship between one's theoretical formulation and empirical investigation." This sentence is actually in the (relatively) straightforward introduction, and is a portent of the writing style to come, in which obtuse theory clouds the powerful possibilities of the field. [~doomsdayer520~]
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Format: Hardcover
Vincent Mosco's book is a fair introduction to political economy, yet the author fails to state that he comes from a very particular approach of political economy, namely the Marxist (some would call it neo-Marxist). As regards Mosco's boundary work towards cultural studies, I agree that the divide between political economy and cultural studies can be seen as `labour analysis' versus `cultural analysis', and further in terms of structural versus interactionist methodologies. However, I wish to reject Mosco's description of political economy as the theoretical `middle way'. Political economy does not stand out as the reconciling discipline between cultural studies and other disciplines (notably policy studies) for a number of reasons. On the most fundamental level, political economy continues to suffer from the tendency to induct all analysis to class alone, despite political economists' claim that their discipline no longer is aquainted with economism and reductionism. This is in my opinion the greatest weakness of Mosco's text. Also, there is little new to the book, although the author claims to be doing rethinking and renewal.
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