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The branding of the "new Ukraine": A media production study of the encoding/decoding of Europeanness during Eurovision Song Contest 2017
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education.
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

There are several studies observing the phenomenon of nation branding as political pursuits and as texts. However, the media are generally treated as neutral platforms in branding literature. Also, relatively little has been done to explore how the context of branding affects the level of text production, not least in relation to media events. Deploying a cultural approach, the present study suggests that the production of branding may be examined in terms of cultural codes (Hall, 1982) and dominant or preferred meanings (Hall, 1973/1992).

The aim of this study is to explore processes of nation branding, as part of media events, from a media production perspective. This is done through observations of the encoding/decoding of the branding narrative of the Europeanness of Eurovision, as formula for a revised Ukrainian identity, in production and backstage processes of the event 2017.

The material consists of qualitative interviews with five agents involved in the branding of Ukraine during Eurovision The analysis is based on the theoretical concepts of, firstly, Hall’s (1973/1992) model of encoding/decoding and, secondly, Ytreberg’s (1999) model for the analysis of text production. Hall emphasises the discursive aspects of audiences’ interpretations, but, with reference to Ytreberg’s idea of text production as a result of negotiated interpretations, it is argued that discursive aspects are just as significant for agents in the production process.

Three cases are used to illuminate the tensions in the media production of the branding narrative: The encoding/decoding of a branding concept, of the relationship to Russia, and of a Ukrainian Europeanness. The tensions mainly occur between the agents in the professional position in relation to oppositional readings of the dominant code (Hall, 1973/1992). They can be understood as struggles over the preferred meaning (Hall, 1973/1992) of Ukraine’s Europeanness in the branding narrative, which are enacted in the media production.

The two main strategies for negotiating the tensions regard the representation of the categories of time and space. However, I propose that the agents in the media production also perform a third strategy in relation to the tensions that arise, the detached strategy of professionalism, based in the frameworks of knowledge (Hall, 1973/1992) that the agents possess.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. , p. 83
Keywords [en]
Nation branding, Eurovision, encoding/decoding, text production
National Category
Media and Communications
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-35529OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-35529DiVA, id: diva2:1215322
Subject / course
Media and Communication Studies
Presentation
(English)
Uppsok
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2018-06-08 Created: 2018-06-08 Last updated: 2018-06-08Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
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  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
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  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
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Output format
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  • asciidoc
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