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Hollywood Planet: Global Media and the Competitive Advantage of Narrative Transparency (Routledge Communication Series) Hardcover – June 1, 1999

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Debates about the cultural impacts of global media have ranged for 2 decades without resolution exercising media scholars, anthropologists, and sociologists. Most acknowledge the dominance of the U.S. in global entertainment, particularly film, but a key divide has been whether explanations should prioritize 'political economy' or 'cultural' factors. Scott Robert Olson's Hollywood Rlanet is a welcome attempt to examine what the contents of global media might contribute to that domination.
Journal of Communication

A thought-provoking, rigorously handled discourse on the competitive advantage that Hollywood has in influencing the creation and distribution of popular taste on a global scale.
Cornelius B. Pratt
Michigan State University

[Hollywood Planet] represents a long-overdue effort to provide a theoretical basis for pulling together a number of closely interrelated concerns relating to the role and impact of mass media, especially as far as international issues are concerned.
Fred L. Casmir
Pepperdine University

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

C. Gordon Olson was converted and called to ministry while studying engineering and majored in theology at Dallas Seminary. Serving in Pakistan in several significant ministries (1956-64), he founded the Pakistan Fellowship of Evangelical Students, now reaching thousands of students. He was Professor of Theology and Missions at Northeastern Bible College for 25 years, has spoken in 300 churches and was pastor of 4 in metro NYC, a Bible answer man on WFME for a decade, and a trustee of 3 mission agencies. He received the D.Miss. from Trinity Int. Univ. and missions text has been widely used in 6 editions since 1990.
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Product Details

  • Series: Routledge Communication Series
  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (June 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805832297
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805832297
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,317,480 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
America produces more than its fair share of internationally popular television programs and feature films, a phenomenon that has not been understood until now. Scott Robert Olson explains the power of American media and its effect clearly in this volume by redefining the term transparent: "Transparency is the capability of certain texts to seem familiar regardless of their origin, to seem a part of one's own culture, even though they have been crafted elsewhere." One prime example cited is the presentation scene in Disney's "The Lion King." Mufasa smears his infant son's forehead with dirt and melon juice then lifts him high for the cheering animals to view. The polysemy of this ritual leaves plenty of room for many cultures to mentally adapt it to their own infant initiations: baptism, bris, shahada, circumcision. "The presentation of Simba is none of these rituals and all of them," Olson writes. Written in an academic style that is heftier than the title might indicate, Olson's well thought out and documented thesis is an original one to which Hollywood producers will pay close attention if they want a formula for being internationally successful. Olson's new application of the term "transparent" will be run up the flagpole and saluted by communication experts trying to explain why American television and films command global audiences.
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