Media Minds: Media, Race, and Urban Teens

THU, OCT 23, 2003 (1:09:54)

A panel discusses how media can drive perceptions and expectations.

According to the Communications Industry Forecast, the average American spends more than 8 hours a day using media, including, TV, music, and print media. For young people, this means that they are often spending more time listening to media than they are to parents, teachers, or even peers. There can be no doubt, then, that media has a huge impact on how young people see themselves and the world around them.

Youth in the city face increased pressure to succeed in school as well as a tense political and economic climate in the world around them. We all need the tools to understand how media impacts their lives and their community. Youth need the opportunity to voice their perceptions in dialogue with the adults and media that represent them. Teens need a platform to create their media as well as a place to share how they can positively represent themselves. A summit for the youth of Boston on issues of media and culture provides such an opportunity.

The best way to share information with youth is through other youth. Youth Voice Collaborative (YVC) brings together young people from many of the youth serving agencies doing media production and social justice work in the city. In keeping with the YVC model, trained youth work together with staff to plan and implement the conference. Through speakers, dialogue, and activity, youth share the work they do, and network in order to find new ways to be heard.

+ BIO: Gail Dines

Gail Dines received her PhD from Salford University in England. She is an associate professor of Sociology and Women's Studies at Wheelock College in Boston. Dr. Dines is co-editor of the best-selling media textbook, Gender, Race and Class in Media (Sage, 1995), used in over 150 colleges across the country. She is co-author of Pornography: The Production and Consumption of Inequality (Routledge, 1998). Her numerous articles on pornography, the media and violence have appeared in academic journals and books, as well as in magazines and newspapers such as Newsweek, Time, Working Woman, New York Times, Boston Globe, USA Today, Daily Mail (England). Dr. Dines has also been on shows such as Donohue, Sally Jesse Raphael, Entertainment Tonight, and is a frequent guest on radio shows across the country.

+ BIO: Jack Levin

Jack Levin, PhD, is the Brudnick Professor of Sociology and Criminology at Northeastern University in Boston, where he co-directs its Center on Violence and Conflict and teaches courses in the sociology of violence and hate. He has authored or co-authored 30 books, including Mass Murder: America's Growing Menace, Why We Hate, The Functions of Prejudice, Hate Crimes Revisited, The Will to Kill: Making Sense of Senseless Murder, Domestic Terrorism, Serial Killers and Sadistic Murderers Up Close and Personal, and The Violence of Hate.

Dr. Levin has published more than 150 articles in professional journals and newspapers, such as The New York Times, Boston Globe, Dallas Morning News, Philadelphia Inquirer, Christian Science Monitor, Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, and USA Today. He appears frequently on national television programs, including 48 Hours, 20/20, Dateline NBC, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Oprah, The O'Reilly Factor, Larry King Live, and all network newscasts.

Dr. Levin was honored by the Massachusetts Council for Advancement and Support of Education as its Professor of the Year. He has spoken to a wide variety of community, academic, and professional groups, including the White House Conference on Hate Crimes, the Department of Justice, the Department of Education, OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (a membership of 59 countries) and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

+ BIO: Robert Hilliard

Dr. Robert L. Hilliard was the chief of the Educational Broadcasting Branch of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and chaired the Federal Interagency Media Committee for the White House. Prior to joining the Commission staff, Dr. Hilliard was both a broadcaster and teacher of broadcasting at various colleges and universities in New York and North Carolina. He also wrote a number of highly regarded college textbooks on various phrases of radio and television broadcasting. He currently teaches at Emerson College as a Professor of Visual and Media Arts and was formerly the Dean of Graduate Studies and Dean of Continuing Education there.


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