Contrasting And Comparing Mass Society With Popular Culture Media Essay

When studying mass society and popular culture it is evident that there is a connection between the two theories. Yet, both also consist of two different perspectives in the relationship between media and its audiences. Popular culture, also known as pop culture, is a modern day standard of living life and items that are well recognized and usually accepted by our society today. On the other hand mass society is a society which possesses a mass culture and large-scale, distant, social institutions. The theories of mass society and popular culture provide two distinct perspectives on the relationship between media and the audience. However, in modern civilization it is mass society that dominates and is more applicable in today’s society.

Sub Topics:

What is mass society?

What is popular culture?

Mass society and the audience.

Popular culture and the audience.

Proof that mass society is more applicable in today’s society.


Paragraph 1:

When attempting to grasp the theory of mass society it is important to know that mass society is a theoretical perspective which is most popularly defined as a passive and manipulative form which possesses a mass culture and a number of people in modern day society. In other words mass society is a theory that draws together the work of various classical social theorists, as well as behavior scientists. Unlike popular culture, in a mass society people are manipulated into feeling the need to buy what there being sold, by the media, for personal needs. “Individuals are seen as rootless not treated or valued on the basis of their individual qualities but bound together by needs rather than tradition” (Kevin Williams Pg.25).

Overall it is the mass society theory that has encouraged a view of the effects of the media on people’s lives and behaviors as straight forward and unmistakable.

Paragraph 2:

Similar to the majority of things that form a big part of our daily lives, popular culture is familiar and obvious. Popular culture, also referred to as pop culture, by definition consists of the traditional practices and beliefs or way of living life. It is in fact a collection of practices society follows in their everyday life. Popular culture consists of two very important words that help define its purpose and meaning a little better; the words “popular” and “culture”. “Popular” is the word used to define something that is liked by many individuals and the majority. An example of this would be the show “The Jersey Shore”. A television program that has been ranked by its viewers and MTV live, as the number one show that teenagers watched when it was aired. Making the show what is defined as something popular. The word “culture” on the other hand, has two definitions to it. One being the artistically perspective and cultural sense, and the other definition is an understanding that culture is a form of living life and what can differentiate between our social and ethnic groups. Although these two definitions are the most common to culture, there are still other definitions applied to it. Another for example is; “the social production and reproduction of sense, meaning and consciousness, the sphere of meaning which unifies the spheres of production (economics) and social relations (politics)”. (O’Brian. p.5). This is merely an example, because of the many definitions that can be given to culture, of how diverse even the term culture itself is. From the two terms “popular” and “culture” springs the theory of Popular Culture, which is an acceptable way of consuming and producing and living life freely.

Paragraph 3:

As stated previously, the mass society theory is known to have a way with its audience. Threw the theory of mass media, the media is known to be passive and manipulative with the audience. The media manipulates its audience to desire and consume whatever it is they are attempting to sell and produce. Although many sociologists would go against this belief that the media does has a direct effect and sense of control on their audience, the constant growth rate and vast amount of money that corporations gain today says the contrary. In modern times, society is filled with constant advertisements that corporations produce so that their products will be purchased and used by individuals. Aside from the vast amount of advertisements on television society is also surrounded by more advertisements outside of the television, such as magazines and billboards. The question still arises; if the media does not have an influence on its audience why is it that so much money is being put into advertising? (Kevin Williams, Pg. 165). It is evident that the media does in fact have a huge impact on society today.

Paragraph 4:

When looking at popular culture and the audience it can be argued that unlike mass society, popular culture is not primarily about consuming and production. Popular culture is not just a business it is also a lifestyle and unlike mass society it gives society the choice and freedom to choose what they do and do not want to consume. For example; when different trends are born individuals are given the option to follow these trends or to chose a different trend that they feel will show there personality better. Even with foods and life styles pop culture will vary. It is a choice and a way of living that is constantly changing throughout time.

Paragraph 5:

In today’s culture it is obvious that mass society does dominate. The purpose to sell and suck the audience into the products is becoming harder to resist. Individuals are being manipulated from a very young age by the numerous amounts of corporations and advertisements surrounding them in their everyday lives. James Steyer, the author of the book “The Other Parent”, writes the following in his book; “It’s pretty clear that the goal of this multinational, sophisticated marketing scheme is not to benefit young children – who shouldn’t be watching a lot of TV anyways – but to sell and enrich the network, manufacturers, and producers.” (Steyer, Pg.98). This is the case in present times as mass society has their way with its “victims”. James Steyer later states that the target of these huge, manipulative campaigns are children of all ages, like his two year old daughter Carly. “The aim was to encourage her attachment to the TV characters so that she’d ask for the licensed products”(Steyer. Pg.98). Proving just how the theory of mass society is dominating more and more each day. Once children gain the emotional attachment to the TV persona, companies will use that attachment to sell and produce products that the audience feels a connection with so that they can sell through them.

Conclusion and Restate Thesis:

Overall, the when comparing and contrasting the two theories of mass society and popular culture one can acknowledge that although both are two businesses, they are two different perspectives on mass media and society. Attempting to grasp an understanding of how the mass society works and has come to be known as passive and manipulative requires a lot of over viewing.

The theories of mass society and popular culture provide two distinct perspectives on the relationship between media and the audience. However, in modern civilization it is mass society that dominates and is more applicable in today’s society.

Place your order
(550 words)

Approximate price: $22

Calculate the price of your order

550 words
We'll send you the first draft for approval by September 11, 2018 at 10:52 AM
Total price:
The price is based on these factors:
Academic level
Number of pages
Basic features
  • Free title page and bibliography
  • Unlimited revisions
  • Plagiarism-free guarantee
  • Money-back guarantee
  • 24/7 support
On-demand options
  • Writer’s samples
  • Part-by-part delivery
  • Overnight delivery
  • Copies of used sources
  • Expert Proofreading
Paper format
  • 275 words per page
  • 12 pt Arial/Times New Roman
  • Double line spacing
  • Any citation style (APA, MLA, Chicago/Turabian, Harvard)

Our Guarantees

Money-back Guarantee

You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.

Read more

Zero-plagiarism Guarantee

Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.

Read more

Free-revision Policy

Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.

Read more

Privacy Policy

Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.

Read more

Fair-cooperation Guarantee

By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.

Read more