Friday, February 17, 2017

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "Buckwheat's Zydeco Party" album by Buckwheat Zydeco. Added a FAV track to my "BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: Walkin’ To New Orleans
By Buckwheat Zydeco
From the album Buckwheat’s Zydeco Party

Added to BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 17, 2017 at 04:25PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

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Thursday, February 16, 2017

GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: "The Ugly American" (W6-P6) [VID] Sp17


What are the counterproductive attitudes that Americans can have about people from other countries?*
  • "Foreigners coming to live in the U.S. should adapt American ways."
  • "Asians do many things backwards."
  • "Much of the world’s population remains underdeveloped because they don’t take the initiative to develop themselves."
  • "Americans have been very generous in teaching other people how to do things the right way."
  • "English should be accepted as the universal language."

Q: Central theme in the counterproductive attitudes expressed above?
A: Ethnocentrism: a belief that your group's ways are the best ways.

Imagine a person working in development communication who heads into a development project abroad with the above attitudes. How would things work out?



The phrase "ugly American" comes, in part, from a 1958 novel about an American who travels abroad and expresses an ethnocentric attitude.  The novel was made into a 1963 film staring Marlon Brando.




Now to another film.  How does Disney's Pocahontas fit into this discussion?

Do you spot the ethnocentric attitude from John Smith in this Pocahontas clip?
(If the video clip does not work, then the Disney's Pocahontas film can be found on sites like Netflix.  If you find the full film see the segment from about 35:45 to about 40:00.)



Given the similarity between Pocahontas and Avatar (see below), then you might explore the "ugly Earthling" aspects of Avatar.  Can you think of other related films?






* Of course, this could go the other way. People in other countries can have ethnocentric views toward the U.S. --  The ugly _____.



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GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: Hofstede’s Dimensions of Value Orientation (W6-P5) Sp17



Geert Hofstede during the 1980s surveyed over 100,000 workers in multinational corporations in forty countries.

He found 4 main dimensions along which countries/cultures differ. Each country was ranked according to his dimensions.

  • 1. Individualism - Collectivism
    • I versus We
    • e.g., “Squeaking wheel gets the greasy.”
    • e.g., “The nail that sticks up gets pounded down.”
    • Indiv. (e.g., U.S. & Australia) <--------> Coll (e.g., Taiwan & Peru)




  • 2. Uncertainty Avoidance
    • The extent to which a culture feels threatened by the unknown.
    • Hi-U.A. cultures try to avoid uncertainty.
    • Hi UA (e.g., Greece & Japan) <---> Low UA (e.g. U.S. & Denmark )


A high uncertainty avoidance person or culture would want to avoid any uncertainty.
If a person or generally a group of people have high uncertainty avoidance, would they be more future oriented or more past oriented?
Which would be more likely to take risks?  Hi-UA or low-UA?





  • 3. Power Distance
    • The extent to which a culture accepts inequality.
    • Hi-P.D. cultures accept inequality in relationships.
    • Hi PD (e.g. Philippines & India) <----> Low PD (e.g. Sweden & N.Z.)










  • 4. Masculinity and Femininity
    • Masculinity = assertiveness, ambition, possessions...
    • Femininity = caring and nurturing...
    • M (e.g., Japan & Italy) <-----------> F (e.g., Norway & Denmark)





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GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: Cultural Values (W6-P4) Sp17


What are values?

"Social principles, goals, or standards accepted by persons in a culture. They are learned by contacts with the family, teachers, and religious leaders. The media also may influence one’s value system."

Or what are the things that a culture finds valuable, important.
Money?   Family?

























What are your values?  Where did you get them?  Are there some values more important than others?  What is your most important value?  Interacted with somebody who has a different set of values?




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GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: A Model of Intercultural Com (W6-P3) Sp17





Read the diagram above.  The model of intercultural communication (ICC) begins with two people from different cultures interacting or communicating.  What is the rest of the process?  What are the parts of the process of intercultural communication?  In this model, the goal is effective intercultural communication, but what are some of the barriers that can cause problems?  Prejudice?  Stereotypes?  Discrimination?  Differences in language?  Others?



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GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: Definitions and Metaphors for Culture (W6-P2) Sp17


What is culture?

There are hundreds of definitions of culture in the literature.
Let's use this one:

Culture is a set of shared knowledge that influences a particular group of people’s behavior (Hart).

Metaphors of Culture
  • Hofstede's Computer Metaphor:
    • Culture is the software of the mind.
    • We are programmed by our experiences.  We are taught our culture.
  • Hofstede's Game Metaphor:
    • Culture is "the unwritten rules of the social game."
  • The Iceberg Metaphor of Culture
    • Above the waterline—what we can see; behaviors that are visible.
    • Below the waterline—what we cannot see; values and beliefs that are not visible.

File:Iceberg.jpg


























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GlobalMedia: Intercultural Com: Tower of Babel (W6-P1) Sp17




File:Brueghel-tower-of-babel.jpg
The Tower of Babel by Pieter Bruegel the Elder (1563). Image in the public domain.

The image above depicts the Biblical story of how different languages and cultures came to be.


So, what is the story and what does it have to do with intercultural communication?



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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "New Orleans Piano Wizard: Live!" album by James Booker. Added a FAV track to my "BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: Come Rain Or Come Shine
By James Booker
From the album New Orleans Piano Wizard: Live!

Added to BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 7, 2017 at 05:52PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr






Thursday, February 2, 2017

GlobalMedia: Music, MTV & Global Media: Global Media, Music & the Future (W4-P5) Sp17


Some of Crother's Emerging Developments especially relevant to music
  • Social Media
    • Social networking will continue to be a platform for the spread of information, products, cultural styles, and political and social change around the world."
    • "The YouTube-ification of entertainment is likely to expand."
  • Fragmegration
    • "Challenges to American movies, music, and television programs will arise for a variety of economic, political, and cultural reasons, leading to new alliances seeking to limit the effects of American popular culture within their communities."
    • "American popular culture may facilitate the emergence of a global culture, at least to a limited extent."
    • "Increased exposure to American popular culture will encourage the development of hybrid forms that have value to local cultures."
  • North-South
    • Cultural integration is more likely within and among components of the Global North* than it is within and among the Global South*, thereby deepening the gap between north and south.


*North–South Divide: a the "broadly considered a socio-economic and political divide. Generally, definitions of the Global North include North America, Western Europe and developed parts of East Asia. The Global South is made up of Africa, Latin America, and developing Asia including the Middle East" (Wikipedia).

OSCEmap 2005.png
"OSCEmap 2005". Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.



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GlobalMedia: Music, MTV & Global Media: Measuring the Spread of American Music (W4-P4) Sp17


So, if American music contains American values and if said music may cause changes in the cultures of other countries, then just how widespread is American music?

How would you measure how widespread?  What evidence would you give?

Ways to Assess the Preeminence of American Music in World Entertainment
  1. "A review of the top-selling albums of all time suggests the dominance of American music, for example. As of November 2011, there were twenty-seven albums that had sold at least fifteen million copies worldwide, and sixteen were the product of undeniably American acts. The Eagles’ Their Greatest Hits is tied with Michael Jackson’s Thriller for the number one selling album of all time, at twenty-nine million sales."
  2. "Similar evidence for American music prominence can be found in considering the individual artists and groups in terms of their certified global record sales. The most successful musical act of all time, for example, is not American: it is The Beatles, with 177 million album sales in their history."  However most other top selling artists and groups are American.
  3. "The dominance of American rock, country, and hip-hop is perhaps most evident in the direct linkage of music and television created in 1981 with the formation of the cable network MTV, Music Television. In their endless search for venues... An idea this profitable was sure to spread, and spread it did. Just ten years after its creation, MTV was available in 201 million households in seventy-seven countries ranging from Australia to Brazil to Hong Kong. MTV Europe grew from 3 million households in 1988 to 14 million in 1991 and then 37 million in 1992."

How else would you measure the spread of American music?  What evidence would you give?

International Billboard Charts (limited access)
Spotify Charts



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GlobalMedia: Music, MTV & Global Media: American Culture in Country, Rock and Hip-Hop (W4-P3) Sp17



According to Crothers the first step in understanding the effects that American popular culture artifacts may have on other cultures is to identify the American cultural values in the artifacts.

What is the culture hidden in the popular music genres. Crothers covers three prominent American music genres: country, rock and hip-hop and also identifies the cultural values in the music.

Do you agree with Crothers' analysis?


Country Music




"Country has long prided itself on reflecting the lives of real people, particularly working-class, rural Americans. Country’s topics have chronicled the struggles of the individual as he or she tries to make it in a dead-end job, in a difficult marriage, or even through addiction to drugs or alcohol."

"Additionally, country regularly sings the virtues of hard work, traditional love, the glory of a loving family, and unabashed patriotism. The real America, country seems to say, is the America in which people struggle but take responsibility for their personal fates. Americans fight for their honor and dignity as ends all their own."


Rock Music





"At its heart were energy, excitement, and rebellion. Rock musicians tapped into their fans’ adolescent dreams".

"Rock, after all, expresses rebellion, energy, and individualism—as do teenagers. The causality seemed self-evident: children who were once compliant and sweet."


Hip-Hop Music




"If country celebrated traditional values and patriotism, and rock and roll energized the ambitions of a generation to change the world, hip-hop expressed the anger and frustration of a long-repressed community that had many grievances in what it described as a racist America."

"Hip-hop also reflected a raw form of street sexuality in which suggestive language was common. Other performers offered explicit accounts of their sexual desires and fantasies."



Do you agree with Crothers' analysis?  What would you change or add?  Support your argument.



So, if we can agree that "hidden" in the music are certain American cultural values, then so what?  Why is that important?  What's this have to do with the effects thing discussed earlier?



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GlobalMedia: Music, MTV & Global Media: Crothers' Key Concepts (W4-P2) Sp17


Crother's Key Concepts

In Crothers' 2012 book, Globalization and American Popular Culture, the author explores the "ways that American movies, music, and television programs shape and are shaped by contemporary globalization."


It is important for Americans to study this topic because "it is through these artifacts (and many others) that the rest of the world sees American values and lifestyles."  Or put more poetically: "[W]hat people are likely to see of America and what they are likely to know about America will be filtered through the lens of American popular culture."

So, it is through these artifacts that the world understands American culture.  However, this is not the only reason it is important to study this topic.

More importantly, what effect do these American cultural artifacts have on the cultures other countries?

In the book Crothers defines culture as "the root values, ideas, assumptions, behaviors, and attitudes that members of particular communities generally share in an unexamined, automatic way."

"Among the many things that cultures teach their members are normative standards of evaluation—of dress, food, behavior, attitudes, ideas, and many other things."


---

Early on in the book Crothers covers some additional key concepts: popular culture, globalization and fragmegration.

Crothers discusses popular culture, but does not give a succinct definition, so we go to another source for our definition here:

pop[ular] culture:  "commercial culture based on popular taste: fashion, music, and the iconography of pop culture offered the perfect medium for profit (Oxford Dictionary).

With this given definition, how would you describe American popular culture?
Make special note of music.


---

Similarly, for a succinct definition of globablization, we will need to head to an outside source.

globalization: "the process by which businesses or other organizations develop international influence or start operating on an international scale" (Oxford Dictionary).

"A combination of economic, political, and cultural factors promote globalization by
(1) making it possible to create new and increased ties among people, social networks, and ideas that span traditional nation-state boundaries;
(2) linking people in new ways, making it possible for work or travel or shopping or other activities to take place twenty-four hours a day around the world;
(3) advancing the speed of communication and the expectation of instantaneous contact, in effect making global events and issues local ones as well; and
(4) shaping and reshaping individuals’ ideas and identities as they are exposed to this increasingly complex world" (Crothers, 2012).

---
Crothers draws on James Rosenau's work.

Rosenau coined the term fragmegration "to describe the integration-fragmentation dynamic that shapes globalization today. Fragmentation and integration occur at the same time, profoundly shaping the dynamics of globalization."

At the same time the process of globalization brings the world together and pushes it apart.
Really?  How?  Explain.

How does music fit in here?


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GlobalMedia: Music, MTV & Global Media: Mr. Worldwide (W4-P1) Sp17


Pitbull - International Love ft. Chris Brown


"I've been to countries and cities I can't pronounce
And the places on the globe I didn't know existed
In Romania, she pulled me to the side and told me
'Pit, you can have me and my sister'

In Lebanon, yeah, the women are bomb
And in Greece, you've guessed it, the women are sweet
Spinned [Been?] all around the world but I ain't gon' lie
There's nothing like Miami's heat"

Just how worldly is Mr. Worldwide?   Planet Pit World Tour
Just how international was International Love?  The song

How widespread is American music in other countries around the world?


Would you consider Pitbull's music American music?

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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

MyFavMusic: Just listened to the "The Wild Tchoupitoulas" album by The Wild Tchoupitoulas. Added a FAV track to my "BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings" playlist on Spotify



Fav track from album: Brother John
By The Wild Tchoupitoulas
From the album The Wild Tchoupitoulas

Added to BLUES FAVS - 1000 Recordings playlist by William Hart on February 1, 2017 at 05:24PM

See info on 1000 Recordings

Listen on Spotify

My musical interests on Tumblr