#BCM110: Moral Panics and Group Presentations


Moral Panics – often related to the role of/concern about young people


Concerns about children and the media often linked to Stanley Cohen’s concept of ‘moral panic’.

Corporate paedophilia: Sexualisation of Children in Australia

Recent moral panics in Australia:

Stoner Sloth

Wear it Purple/Gaybe Baby

Safe Schools



By the end of today’s class you should have:

-settled on a topic.

-Decided how you will break this into parts – so you can start working on your individual research reports – DUE SUNDAY MAY 12.

-Be sure you understand the requirements of your individual research reports – see template on Moodle.



Group presentation on 1 media issue that you have researched, including the following:

-An overview of the issue and why it’s of significance

-An account of how the issue has been addressed with appropriate examples drawn from a range of media sources

-A discussion of what has been included or overlooked in the media presentation of this issue and how this might be addressed in theory or practice (Assignment 2: Group Presentation Sheet, Moodle).

So  – what do we mean by a media issue? Something happening in the media (coverage) or something the media is doing (trends) … or something else?


Which media issue? How to choose?

– Could either work from choosing the topic that most interested you? Or something that’s happening in the media that you have followed with interest?

Weekly topics:

-media effects and anxieties about these

-content analysis and cultivation theories

-reading images – representation- semiotics-connotations

-ideology and interpretation

-ownership and control of the media

-the role of the mediated public sphere

-the concept of the moral panic

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