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Homer Simpson Goes to Washington: American Politics through Popular Culture

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The modern landscape of American entertainment is filled with commentary on the state of the union. Many people now get their news from The Daily Show and The Colbert Report instead of Fox or CNN, and satirical political films such as Bulworth and Wag the Dog resonate with audiences and reviewers alike. The cartoon sitcom The Simpsons has used American politics to shape it The modern landscape of American entertainment is filled with commentary on the state of the union. Many people now get their news from The Daily Show and The Colbert Report instead of Fox or CNN, and satirical political films such as Bulworth and Wag the Dog resonate with audiences and reviewers alike. The cartoon sitcom The Simpsons has used American politics to shape its plotlines since its debut in 1989, and many Americans view the current war on terror through the eyes of Jack Bauer, the fictional hero of the controversial action show 24. Politics has always influenced entertainment, and Americans increasingly use popular culture to make sense of the U.S. political system and current debates. There is, however, another facet to the relationship between politics and popular culture: education. Exposure to political ideas through television, film, and music generates interest and increases knowledge among viewers and listeners. The presentation of political ideas in popular media often begins a dialogue through which citizens develop opinions about and interest in political ideas. The resulting discussions of politics and civic life have a significant value as a means to educate Americans about their government. In Homer Simpson Goes to Washington: American Politics through Popular Culture, Joseph J. Foy and other contributing scholars offer a variety of perspectives on politics through the framework of popular culture. From the classic film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington to the cutting-edge television program Chappelle's Show, the authors use a wide spectrum of entertainment media to explain the complexities of U.S. politics and how audiences engage them. The authors not only explain fundamental concepts such as civil rights, democracy, and ethics but also examine common assumptions about government and explore the use of controversial ideas in entertainment. Jennifer J. Hora uses The West Wing to introduce the heroic-president model of executive leadership, and Dean A. Kowalski presents V for Vendetta as a vehicle for understanding American political thought. Other essays test the impact of entertainment news on political knowledge and investigate the presentation of broadcast news in film to determine how well the media serves the people. The book also looks at folk music's ability to popularize protest and offers an insightful commentary on social movements in U.S. history. Popular culture and politics have never been so intertwined in the American consciousness as they are today, with films, television shows, and songs contributing to the debate over the promises versus the realities of democracy. As political knowledge becomes increasingly valuable, Homer Simpson Goes to Washington explains how popular culture can actually help connect people to their government.


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The modern landscape of American entertainment is filled with commentary on the state of the union. Many people now get their news from The Daily Show and The Colbert Report instead of Fox or CNN, and satirical political films such as Bulworth and Wag the Dog resonate with audiences and reviewers alike. The cartoon sitcom The Simpsons has used American politics to shape it The modern landscape of American entertainment is filled with commentary on the state of the union. Many people now get their news from The Daily Show and The Colbert Report instead of Fox or CNN, and satirical political films such as Bulworth and Wag the Dog resonate with audiences and reviewers alike. The cartoon sitcom The Simpsons has used American politics to shape its plotlines since its debut in 1989, and many Americans view the current war on terror through the eyes of Jack Bauer, the fictional hero of the controversial action show 24. Politics has always influenced entertainment, and Americans increasingly use popular culture to make sense of the U.S. political system and current debates. There is, however, another facet to the relationship between politics and popular culture: education. Exposure to political ideas through television, film, and music generates interest and increases knowledge among viewers and listeners. The presentation of political ideas in popular media often begins a dialogue through which citizens develop opinions about and interest in political ideas. The resulting discussions of politics and civic life have a significant value as a means to educate Americans about their government. In Homer Simpson Goes to Washington: American Politics through Popular Culture, Joseph J. Foy and other contributing scholars offer a variety of perspectives on politics through the framework of popular culture. From the classic film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington to the cutting-edge television program Chappelle's Show, the authors use a wide spectrum of entertainment media to explain the complexities of U.S. politics and how audiences engage them. The authors not only explain fundamental concepts such as civil rights, democracy, and ethics but also examine common assumptions about government and explore the use of controversial ideas in entertainment. Jennifer J. Hora uses The West Wing to introduce the heroic-president model of executive leadership, and Dean A. Kowalski presents V for Vendetta as a vehicle for understanding American political thought. Other essays test the impact of entertainment news on political knowledge and investigate the presentation of broadcast news in film to determine how well the media serves the people. The book also looks at folk music's ability to popularize protest and offers an insightful commentary on social movements in U.S. history. Popular culture and politics have never been so intertwined in the American consciousness as they are today, with films, television shows, and songs contributing to the debate over the promises versus the realities of democracy. As political knowledge becomes increasingly valuable, Homer Simpson Goes to Washington explains how popular culture can actually help connect people to their government.

30 review for Homer Simpson Goes to Washington: American Politics through Popular Culture

  1. 5 out of 5

    abatage

    As stated early on in this book: the telling of American Politics is made so much easier when it's done with pop culture referencing. While the televisions shows, movies, songs, etc. that the book talks about may not actually have any intentional message (as open to interpretation as anything might be), it is certainly plausable to find one and use it. There was only one chapter that I found myself trundling through as if it were a regular dry-as-a-bone text-book, but the others were concise and As stated early on in this book: the telling of American Politics is made so much easier when it's done with pop culture referencing. While the televisions shows, movies, songs, etc. that the book talks about may not actually have any intentional message (as open to interpretation as anything might be), it is certainly plausable to find one and use it. There was only one chapter that I found myself trundling through as if it were a regular dry-as-a-bone text-book, but the others were concise and interesting enough on their own. I don't feel like I read a whole lot of new revelations, instead I now feel as though I have a slightly more comprehensive understanding of the American political system (even democracy itself) and will view popular culture with a little bit of an eye for what political stance or topic they are able to represent (or indeed misrepresent). This is a good outline-style book for anyone interested in the topic and far more enjoyable to read than a lot of other texts on subjects which should be far more interesting than they are.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Michael Robinson

    it was funny as i dont know what

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Christiansen

    I was disappointed by the book. It didn't seem to provide anything more than a surface level analysis of the topic. I was disappointed by the book. It didn't seem to provide anything more than a surface level analysis of the topic.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Cody

  5. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Askew

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

  7. 5 out of 5

    Josh Cummings

  8. 4 out of 5

    Auguste

  9. 4 out of 5

    Russ

  10. 5 out of 5

    Miroslav NemĨok

  11. 4 out of 5

    Conor Gleeson

  12. 4 out of 5

    Rose

  13. 5 out of 5

    Librarysteph

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sara

  15. 5 out of 5

    University Press of Kentucky

  16. 4 out of 5

    Squig

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jenna

  18. 4 out of 5

    Shelby Lillian Smith

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mary

  20. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Brockbank

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

  22. 4 out of 5

    Danielle Trent

  23. 5 out of 5

    John Jameson

  24. 5 out of 5

    Theresa

  25. 4 out of 5

    Truan Le

  26. 5 out of 5

    PJ Carter

  27. 5 out of 5

    Paul Campbell

  28. 5 out of 5

    Josh

  29. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

  30. 4 out of 5

    Traci

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