Modern media culture is comprehensive, responding to the basic mass audience need in entertainment. The entertainment component is actively being introduced into the different spheres of media space, transforming traditional media formats. American journalism provides a lot of materials for analyzing various manifestations of comic forms. We could mention the musical and humorous program “Saturday Night Live” on the NBC channel, parodying political elite and received a TV Emmy award this year.
In the “Journalism” section 7 reports were made (out of 9 applications). Several reports were devoted to the genre peculiarity of the embodiment of the comic. Karine Chobanyan turned to the satiric rubric “RedicuList” of the information program “Anderson Cooper 360” on the CNN channel and defined it as an “informational feuilleton”. Svetlana Kanashina settled on the genre nature of popular Internet memes. She stressed the syncretic: textual and graphic components that outplaying the cliches of the American mass consciousness.
In the center of the next two reports was the figure of the USA President Donald Trump. Elena Pavlova emphasized the following important point: Trump appearance on the political arena marked a departure from the discourse of political correctness prevailing over the past decades. Annihilating irony and sarcasm were played a special role in departing from this established practice of public internal political polemics. In the Valery Terin message there was a thought that through Twitter Trump proposed a new type of electronic communication, different from the linear sequence of typographic culture.
The Nikolai Zykov report filled the usually vacant niche. It was dedicated to the “The Voice of America” broadcasting, combining literary and political humor.
Finally, two more reports were devoted to the print press. It is noteworthy that the appeal to the press was brought to the historical context. Yekaterina Zagvozdkina spoke about the ironic coverage in the late 1950s and early 1960s press the image of the “broken generation”, who had denied traditions and social norms.
In Yuliya Balashova report were determined the main stages of the American almanacs evolution, with their satirical variety accentuation. American almanacs developed mainly within the framework of popular and mass culture, invariably retaining their calendar prototype. Such diverse presidents of the United States, like Franklin Roosevelt, and then Richard Nixon, addressed the satirical almanac-calendar form, for the purpose of political PR.
Galina Lapshina summed up a certain result, drawing attention to the points of convergence of American and Russian culture.
CONFERENCE “MASS CULTURE: AN AMERICAN EXPERIENCE”
December 6-13, 2002, Moscow
Supported by Grant No. S-RS500-03-GR-005
The conference took place at the Moscow State University, Department of Journalism. Over 120 participants from 86 Universities of 35 cities took part in the section and plenary meetings during the week. Young and distinguished scholars came from various parts of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus to present their papers and discuss problems dealing with Mass Culture of the USA and its influence upon the existing trends in World culture. Two participants arrived from the USA, though three more people (two from the USA and one from Italy) were not able to come due to a sudden change in a process of visa issuing.
In 2002 the grant gave the researchers from such distant cities as Chita and Kemerovo an opportunity to be present at the meetings in person.
70 papers were presented at the meetings of 7 sections:
2. The Nineteenth Century – to the Twenty First: Portent Problems.
3. Contemporary Prose and Culture.
4. American Drama.
5. Ethnic Literatures in the USA.
6. Women Studies.
7. Interaction of the American and World Culture.
For the sixth time there was a traditional Round Table Discussion:
“Imprints: Image of America and Image of Russia” (coordinator Prof. Yassen Zassoursky) and for the first time there was a new one organized – “Fantastic in the Arts” (coordinator Ph. D Larisa Mihaylova) which was met with vivid interest and attracted 25 participants.
All the participants got the Program and the collection of Conference Materials with Abstracts and short variants of 62 papers printed in Russian and English.
This year there was a calamity – a fire at the printing office where we gave our materials to publish. It happened on the 29th of November, 2002, and we had only several days left before the beginning of the conference left. It entailed spending some extra resources to make the preprint copy again and urgently print the materials but the book was still produced in time and everybody was provided with it.
Some extra time went to mailing the reimbursements for the tickets which we received from the participants only by the end of March, 2003.
CONFERENCE “LITERATURE AND THE ARTS”
December 5-12, 2003, Moscow
Supported by Grant No. № S-RS500-04-GR-012
The conference took place at the Moscow State University, Department of Journalism.
Over 120 participants from 35 cities took part in section and plenary meetings during the week, with 89 papers delivered by people from 35 cities and 51 universities (a list of cities and Universities represented is attached).
Young and distinguished scholars came from various parts of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus to present their papers and discuss problems of interaction between Literature and the Arts in the USA and concerning interaction of American culture and World culture. Five American scholars took active part in discussions. Among them Professor Irwin Weil, who came to our conference for a twentieth (!) time, Professor Ronald Bosco who was a co-chair for Thoreau discussion, and a Fulbright lecturer Alan Lelchuk.
In 2003 the grant gave the researchers from such distant cities as Chita and Kemerovo an opportunity to be present at the meetings in person, but not all travel expenses have been reimbursed due to lack of funds (in order to pay at least a portion we had to reduce payments to 12 persons and still lacked the money to pay Olga Ushakova from Tymen altogether).
The Program was more varied this year, with the special stress on interaction of various media in 7 sections:
1. Multimedia Journalism.
2. The Nineteenth Century – to the Twenty First.
3. Contemporary Prose and Contemporary Culture.
4. American Drama.
5. Ethnic Literatures in the USA and Multiculturalism.
6. Women in American Culture.
7. Interaction of the American and World Culture.
But besides traditional sections this time there has been four Round table discussions: For the seventh time there was a traditional Round Table Discussion: “Imprints: Image of America and Image of Russia” (coordinator Prof. Yassen Zassoursky), for the second time – “Fantastic in the Arts” (coordinator Ph.D Larisa Mihaylova) which was considered important enough to announce for the next year too. Two new discussions also attracted a considerable attendance – “Author as Teacher: Democratic Experience. Emerson, Thoreau, Whitman, Hawthorne” (coordinated by Prof. Tatyana Venediktova and Prof. Ronald Bosco) and “Border/Hybrid Consciousness” (ccordinated by Prof. Tamara Denisova)
All the participants got the Program and the collection of Conference Materials with Abstracts and short variants of 43 papers printed in Russian and English. This year more people managed to prepare short articles and not just the abstracts, which helped to make the publication of the conference a more substantial resource for scholars in the field.
The collection of this year together with collections of three previous years has been donated to the Library of Congress in Washington DC.
As the previous year, some extra time went to mailing the reimbursements for the tickets which we received from the participants only by the end of March, 2004.