In six pages this paper examines studying culture and media from a structuralism perspective. Five sources are cited in the bibliography.
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subject is decentered, in other words the central focus on the individual in much social analysis is replaced by the focus on the structures, of which the individual is just
another element" (Underwood, 2001). Structuralist methods apply to various divisions within the social sciences such as the linguistics of Ferdinand de Saussure, the cultural critical of Roland Barthes, the anthropology
of Claude Levi-Strauss and the psychoanalysis of Jacques Lacan. Structuralism plays a large part in the presentation and perception of the media as some critics believe that viewers can look
beyond media reports by perceiving the signs throughout the text while other researchers, such as Barthes in his post-structural phase, believed that language was not transparent by in fact most
communication was distorted and could not be presented otherwise (Underwood, 2001; Barthes, 1972). Structuralism overall, tends to assume that there is a structure or a "depth model" in which researchers
can find the "truth" and in so doing are able to "stand outside language using the meta-languages of linguistic, sociological or philosophical analysis (Underwood, 2001).
Within the last century, studies in language, or linguistics expanded greatly partly due to the work of the Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure whose 1915 work "Course in
General Linguistics" (published after his death of two of his students) discussed the development of the term "structuralism" and later "post-structuralism" which places a great deal of importance of language
in regards to cultural studies (Underwood, 2001; de Saussure, 1971). Structuralism deals with semiotics or semiology in which de Saussure described as "a science which studies the life of signs
at the heart of social life" and this science would teach researchers "what signs consist of, what laws govern them" and would not be limited to verbal signs only (de