Media Theory Revision Guide

"...essential for all media students"

All A level theorists covered alongside revision summaries and exam practise exercises.





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Homeland invokes ethnically motivated stereotypes of the Middle East, reconstructing the terrorist sponsoring Middle East as an ‘other’ to the ordered world of America democracy.

Yet the series invokes a number of transcoding strategies that nudge those representations in a new direction. The depiction of bipolar Carrie as a strong and self-reliant lead character clearly offers the show’s audience an unusually counter-typical representation of mental illness, whilst the narrative blurring of the West/East Good/Bad binary through the use of Brodie deconstructs the simplistic and often two-dimensional and simplistic presentation of the Muslim world as a terrorist other.

In this sense, Homeland reinforces Stuart Hall's argument that negative stereotypes can be successfully contested through the use of countertypes or narratives that deconstruct received stereotypes.


Gilroy suggests that media stereotyping helps to exclude some groups from mainstream society - making them 'others' to those traits or behaviours that are seen as socially acceptable or considered normal.

Media terminology used

Stereotype transcoding

Transcoding occurs when media makers offer alternatives to negative stereotypes. Transcoding can be enabled through the use of countertypes or deconstructed stereotypes.

Deconstructed stereotype

A method of transcoding or reversing stereotypes. Hall tells us that negative stereotypes can be repurposed by texts to explain the affects of stereotyping. A product for instance that offers us a chav stereotype but then explains why that character behaves negatively might lead readers to empathise with those groups rather than to vilify them.

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Media Theory for A Level
The Essential Revision Guide