The Loosemore Auditorium saw a packed house Tuesday night as Brent Malin took the stage to discuss “Post-Network Manhood: Television, Niche-Marketing, and the Rhetoric of Masculinity.” In addition to being the Third Annual James W. Carey Lecture, the event celebrated the 30thanniversary of the School of Communications and the 10th anniversary of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
Students and faculty were in attendance for Malin’s lecture that covered technology, culture, and economics in the world of television. The discussion centered on the political economy of today’s television programs. Malin examined the connection between the way television is funded and regulated and the hyper-masculine depictions of men on “narrowcasted” and “viralcasted” shows.
“This should make you question what ‘quality’ television is,” Malin said. “To be interesting, a show has to be hyper-masculine. So what does that say about us? What does it say about writers and producers and their creativity?”
Advertising and Public Relations major Melissa Brink was in attendance for the lecture. Brink said connecting to the topic was easy considering the modern examples.
“It’s interesting to hear why we like certain programs,” Brink said. “The television shows Malin discussed are extremes and are scenarios that will never play out. Discussing why we are attracted to these themes really makes you reconsider what you watch.”
The lecture concluded with Malin opening the floor for questions. Questions addressed topics such as gender issues regarding women to Grand Theft Auto 5. Overall the night was a success for everyone involved.
The sponsors of the lecture were the Communication Studies Major of the Grand Valley State University School of Communications, the Institute of General Semantics, and the GVSU Women and Gender Studies Program.