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Mass Media Powerful Agent of Socialization

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Submitted By pokerockdude
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Discuss how far sociologists would agree that the mass media is a more powerful agent of socialization than the education system.
Mass media is a more powerful agent of socialization than the education system because it is the medium by which a certain element of reality is constructed (reality as in understanding of the society by members of society) and that it can influence culture and transmit culture to the population. Since culture is the integral part to human existence, it is the core that combines religion, politics, ideology, philosophy, history, tradition, and trends all in one, which all influence human behaviour and influence self-perception and identity. The cultural values that are transmitted by the media thereby shape the thinking patterns, values, interests and sense of identity to individuals, which causes individuals to take in the information and assimilate it - hence being an agent of socialization. Because everyone is exposed to the media since they are children to adults, they are under its influence.

The functionalist point of view, you can say that the media dictates to the populace the values and the type of thinking that is required in order to conform with the rest of society in order to be an "upstanding member of society". For instance, people are socialized to take in worldviews, political opinions, and values that enable them to assimilate the prevailing ideology set by the economic and political system: capitalism. The idea of what constitutes a "model citizen" and an "accepted member of society" is created by those who own the media and the factors that influence what goes out of the media. When you venture into marxist or conflict perspective, you would have to say that the media is controlled by the dominant class in society, and that ideology and values by the dominant class are transmitted to members of society for the sake…...

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