Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Influential magazines of 20th century28 Sept. 2004
- Published on Amazon.com
In these days of TV, movies, DVDs, computer graphics, and ubiquitous advertising, most are unmindful of the role that magazines founded in the earlier and middle years of the 1900s played in bringing about and affecting this visual culture. The two South American authors with extensive experience in international magazines and media focus on eight magazines that had leading roles in bringing about the contemporary visual culture and which to varying degrees continue to influence and reflect it. The eight are Time, Hola!, Life, Paris Match, Reader's Digest, People, Der Spiegel, and National Geographic. Time, for example, founded in the early 1920s, created the mold for news coverage which is followed by other news magazines and TV news programs down to today. Life pioneered photojournalism, and laid the groundwork for the media treatment of celebrity. National Geographic helped to popularize many areas of science, from paleontology to astronomy; and in more recent years, raise environmental and multicultural concerns. By covering eclectic and unpredictable subjects, Reader's Digest and People were instrumental in the ascendancy of popular culture. The foreign magazines from Spain, France, and German had similar influences on their respective cultures, while at the same time, like the U. S. publications, had a part in bringing about the global culture of media, celebrity, and entertainment. The authors Angeletti and Oliva explain the strategies of the founder of each of the magazines which allowed them to become so successful even though the odds were heavily against them. About half of the content is photographs or art work from the magazines over the years. As the text relates the playing out of the strategies in the adaptations to cultural and competitive changes over the years, the extensive visual matter is a record of visual styles in media over the years. Some photos or illustrations are cultural hallmarks. The work is a notable contribution to media studies for bringing together the leading magazines so as to put them alongside the newer media such as TV and computers as a part of the media field that has taken a central, formulative role in today's society.