Blanca de Lizaur, PhD, MA, BA, Content specialist.

Tag: Estudios culturales

THE WAY OUR BRAIN WORKS, AND HUMAN EXPRESSION. Implications for Literature, Media and research

THE WAY OUR BRAIN WORKS, AND HUMAN EXPRESSION. Implications for Literature, Media and research

Specialized, For media people
1. Introduction They say that Chesterton and his brother Cecil enjoyed such good and lively intellectual discussions, and they became so absorbed in them that they would stop in the middle of the street talking, and it could rain down on them or the sun might set, before they would quit their enjoyable and productive intellectual sword-fights. People who ran into them in the street, went around them, since it was impossible to pass between or separate the two stout gentlemen, who on the other hand were very well-loved by all –even by their enemies–. At the end of the day, and after having taken care of the day's tasks, some would return to ask how they had resolved the dilemma. Thus, in fact “the daily discussion” was beneficial to others too, ...as long as they had been intelligent
No transaction without TRUST; <em>no trust without evidence of VALUES</em> –But WHOSE values…?

No transaction without TRUST; no trust without evidence of VALUES –But WHOSE values…?

Multimedia, For media people, Para:, Videos
1. The 2012 Edelman Trust Barometer [summary regarding Spain] [global summary in English] , the conclusions of which are presented in this video, shows a major drop in credibility and trust, towards almost all institutions, in practically all of the countries included in the study. That said, what's new…? Let us examine a few press headlines from the last three years, chosen at random, to understand what set off this crisis in trust, and the way it is affecting the media: “MGM Studio Files Bankruptcy; Eyes Lender Takeover” [MGM Studios, producers of the James Bond franchise, declare bankruptcy in court]; Jonathan Stempel; Gerald E. McCormick & Dave Zimmerman, eds.; El Economista.es; Nov. / 3 / 2010. “The Music Industry is Dying a Slow Death. Not just because of illegal downloa
THE POWER OF SOUND –…by its effects you shall know it;  talk by Julian Treasure

THE POWER OF SOUND –…by its effects you shall know it; talk by Julian Treasure

Multimedia, For everybody, Para:, Videos
When one of us wants to communicate with others, we figure out how we can make use of the resources at our disposal, to do so. This means that for purposes of communication, a series of processes aimed ultimately at the expression of our message are deployed –causing it to reach the person we want to receive it–. We have many ways to achieve this. For example: We can express ourselves using sounds, voice, gestures, actions, and by illustration (through the use of images, alphabets, ideograms or codes); as well as through dramatizations… And regardless of whether this is achieved using natural or artifical means (or methods, or technologies), new or old ones –like electronic media and mobile devices–. What matters here, is not so much which means we choose, as what message we are e
Have you ever wondered  WHAT “MORBID” CONTENTS ARE?

Have you ever wondered WHAT “MORBID” CONTENTS ARE?

For media people, Para:, Magazine
In our language, and according to the “Diccionario de la Real Academia Española” (Dictionary of the Royal Spanish Academy), morbid means “a change in health [...], illness”. We may deduce that something is morbid when: 1) “it causes illness”, or 2), “causes unhealthy mental [...] reactions”. In English, and according to the Oxford Dictionary, “morbid” refers to someone “ …characterized by an abnormal and unhealthy interest in disturbing and unpleasant subjects, especially death and disease…”. In literary terminology, a morbid device is used to attract people's attention; it's a “hook”. In previous articles we established that works with family-oriented contents, “cleaner”/"more wholesome" ones (that is: those that least violate the values, ideas and beliefs of their target public), t
Little by little, you can grow ACCUSTOMED TO (ALMOST) EVERYTHING!

Little by little, you can grow ACCUSTOMED TO (ALMOST) EVERYTHING!

For media people, Para:, Magazine
There are internationally recognized scientists and thinkers in Mexico.  One of them –and a graduate of our University (UNAM), invented an intravenous serum known as the Sodi polarizing solution, which is commonly used in hospitals all around the world.  I am obviously speaking about Dr. Demetrio Sodi Pallares –may he rest in peace. And all of his research, theories and therapeutic successes arise from a common seminal idea: The certainty that, with respect to our metabolism, an excess of intracellular sodium ions reduces the body’s ability to react adequately to illness. To state this more clearly:  The amount of salt we are used to consume, is bad for our health. A case in point: Western medicine arrived in Kenya long before the Western diet did.  Thanks to this, medical records ha
MARGINALIZED LITERATURE, a new vision of an everlasting cultural issue

MARGINALIZED LITERATURE, a new vision of an everlasting cultural issue

Specialized, For everybody, Para:
This article is devoted to a literary and cultural format that has existed for centuries, not as a particular or singular work, but rather as a constant perpetuation of definable narrative schemas –schemas that always adapted to the latest technology available. . In the realm of “elite” culture, it is considered acceptable to discuss, for example, the timeless nature of art or the validity of the slogan ars pro artis (art for art's sake), since, as Souto says, there is a certain “timelessness in art, that cleanly demarcates the author's interests, as they fade away in the light of the poetic reality by which the work transcends.[1] In the realm of popular culture, however, we do not talk –perhaps– about timeless works, so much as timeless schemas: There is nothing as short-lived a
A test about media, YOU JUST WILL LOVE TO ANSWER!

A test about media, YOU JUST WILL LOVE TO ANSWER!

For media people, Para:, Magazine
In “The mysterious case of the missing spectator”, I made a brief reference to popular, low-end, or low-brow literature as the one that characteristically employs a collective aesthetic. What does this really mean? To clarify the explanation, I’m going to ask you to respond to a few questions regarding various types of works and characters that most of us know and like… . Complete the following sentences, filling the empty spaces with the missing word/s: 1) In a “cops and robbers” story, the “good guy” and the “bad guy” find themselves standing face to face, and one of them yells: “Drop it, buddy, or I’ll blow ___________________!” 2) At the most exciting moment of a romantic story, one of the main characters exclaims: “I’ll never leave you, my darling; nothing and nobody will
O, YEE PROUD PRINTED LETTER…!, or How we have come to forget the worth and value of orality and “normality” in the last 100 years.

O, YEE PROUD PRINTED LETTER…!, or How we have come to forget the worth and value of orality and “normality” in the last 100 years.

For everybody, Para:, Magazine
. An incredible but true story... - I -             I once was told that many years ago, the Mexican Ministry of Education undertook an important mission: That of measuring the I.Q. (Intellectual Quotient) of our indigenous peoples, in order to adequate our school system’s curricula and conditions to their real needs.  A large number of teachers, psychologists and pedagogues armed themselves with batteries of written tests, and set themselves to the task. The results, however, couldn’t have been more disheartening: Most communities sampled –according to the experts, scored so low, that we should consider our “Mexican Indians” to be intellectually disabled...! The project and its results were quickly silenced and buried. No-one dared to publish its “discoveries”, yet no-one could tell
When and WHY MASS MEDIA DIE

When and WHY MASS MEDIA DIE

Multimedia, For everybody, Para:, Videos
1st International Conference ‘A favor de lo mejor’ [In favour of what is best, in media], National Auditorium, Mexico City, D.F. Panel: The horizon ahead (for mass media), April, 21st, 1999, 5pm. Transcription --corrected by author: ¿WHEN AND WHY MEDIA DIE...? Along the centuries, many wars have been fought on paper;let us now talk about those spontaneously fought by consumers... I have very little time to convey to you the results of 14 years of research –14 years during which I have studied what people want to see and hear in the media. Today I will present what I consider the most surprising conclusion arising from my work, something even I could not anticipate at the outset of my studies. I will limit myself to the discussion of this one discovery, because you, my au
FOR AUDIENCES WHO LONG TO HAVE FUN WITHOUT SUFFERING (including parents, teachers and all kinds of consumers)

FOR AUDIENCES WHO LONG TO HAVE FUN WITHOUT SUFFERING (including parents, teachers and all kinds of consumers)

For audiences
This web is the result of a seminal discovery, expressed by an uncountable number of impartial consumer and scientific studies: That both because of personal and social reasons, the majority of us want and need  fun contents in media --that is:  to have an appropriate amount of fun,  in a way and amount that seems healthy to our plurisecular cultures. That is why we will gather those of our articles that may interest consumers more, in the  "For audiences (parents, teachers...)"  section of this web. We hope you will like them.  We also hope you will soon start sharing with us your experiences, projects, ideas and material --we'll do our best to accomodate them here, as long as their reproduction is possible, relevant and legal. Welcome home!  Better and more profitable media
ARTICLES THAT INTEREST EVERYBODY (both creators and consumers)

ARTICLES THAT INTEREST EVERYBODY (both creators and consumers)

For everybody
When we study colective aesthetics --like those modelling most popular and folk literatures, there is no way we can divorce the creator from his/her audience. Mass media, just like folk tales, feed precisely from this rich catalogue of cultural elements we all own, as we explained in one of our articles ("A test about media...").  And because of this, creators must redefine themselves as spokesperson of their audiences' values, ideas and beliefs, identify with his/her readers/viewers/listeners, think the way they do, feel with them, and create for and with them. That is why it becomes so difficult to separate those articles that may interest creators, from those that may interest their audiences.  And that is whay we have gatheres articles that interest both of them in this section:
HELP SAVE MEDIA PEOPLE! (artists, creators, producers, publishers, distributors…)

HELP SAVE MEDIA PEOPLE! (artists, creators, producers, publishers, distributors…)

For media people
The Stone monolith that today stands in Saint Peter’s Square in Rome, was carved in Egypt 4000 years ago.  In the year 37 AD, the emperor Caligula ordered that it be moved to Rome.  This was a truly ambitious engineering challenge at the time, as well as proof of the Roman Empire’s power. Almost 1,150 years later, due to natural historical developments, it was necessary to move it to its present location.  Although only a few hundred meters distant, this too necessitated incredible effort and ingenuity and was almost an impossible task given the technology and resources available in Rome in 1586. Domenico Fontana, the chief engineer, spent months planning the operation.  He experimented with mechanisms of all kinds; pulleys, ropes, levers, as well as tools he himself designed. He calcu