The Media in Social Development in Contemporary Africa

Paul Tiyambe Zeleza

in Media and Identity in Africa

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9780748635221
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653010 | DOI:
The Media in Social Development in Contemporary Africa

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This chapter deals with the developmental implications of contemporary mass communication media in Africa. In examining the intersections between the media and development, it is important to analyse the role of media, and to distinguish their various forms, as well as to identify and unpack the paradigms of development. Of media's many roles, four can be singled out for emphasis. First, media serve as vehicles for the transmission of ideas, images and information. Second, they are a communicative space for public discourse and of the discursive public. Third, media are an arena of sign-communication and sign-communities. Finally, they constitute a process for performing social identities and identifying social performances. Three media forms are distinguished: mass communication media, interpersonal media and ‘small’ media.

Keywords: mass communication media; interpersonal media; small media; social development; African media

Chapter.  6655 words. 

Subjects: African Studies

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