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The rediscovery of ‘ideology’; return of the repressed in media studies

STUART HALL

Mass communications research has had, to put it mildly, a somewhat chequered career. Since its inception as a specialist area of scientific inquiry and research—roughly, the early decades of the twentieth century—we can identify at least three distinct phases. The most dramatic break is that which occurred between the second and third phases. This marks off the massive period of research conducted within the sociological approaches of ‘mainstream’ American behavioural science, beginning in the 1940s and commanding the field through into the 1950s and 1960s, from the period of its decline and the emergence of an alternative, ‘critical’ paradigm. This paper attempts ...

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