Item description for Dancing in the Dark: Youth, Popular Culture, and the Electronic Media by Roy M. Anker, Lambert Zuidervaart & John William Worst...
The authors offer an insightful analysis of the symbiotic relationship between the popular entertainment industry and America's youth, suggest principles for evaluating popular art and entertainment, and propose strategies for rebuilding strong local cultures in the face of global media giants.
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Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.04" Width: 6.05" Height: 1" Weight: 1.1 lbs.
Release Date Nov 19, 1990
Publisher Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
ISBN 0802805302 ISBN13 9780802805300
Availability 0 units. This item is restricted to one per order.
More About Roy M. Anker, Lambert Zuidervaart & John William Worst
Roy M. Anker taught film and literature for many years at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan. His other books include Catching Light: Looking for God in the Movies and Of Pilgrims and Fire: When God Shows Up at the Movies.
Roy M. Anker currently resides in the state of Michigan.
Reviews - What do customers think about Dancing in the Dark?
EXCELLENT BOOK ON YOUTH CULTURE AND MINISTRY Mar 28, 2007
If there's ever a time when this book and its message need to get out to youth ministers, it's today, with the "emergence" of emerging churches.
It's time for Eerdmans to update and print a second edition of this book reflecting more recent trends.
This is must-reading for everyone involved in ministering to and educating adolescents.
the "stuff" on the youth side of the generation gap Feb 21, 2001
"To be able to fill leisure intelligently is the last product of civilization." - Bertrand Russell
This book was written by five professors from Calvin College who teach in the following disciplines: communication arts and sciences, English, history, music, and philosophy. I picked it up after listening to a tape by Howard Hendricks from Dallas Theological Seminary, who gave it a fabulous recommendation. After reading it, I would have to do the same. This book gives it's own statement of purpose better than I would be able to - "In short, our thesis is that youth and the electronic media today are dependent upon each other. The media need the youth market, as it is called, for their own economic survival. Youth, in turn, need the media for guidance and nurture in a society where other social institutions, such as the family and the school, do not shape the youth culture as powerfully as they once did" (11,12). This book is now ten years old and it is outdated by some standards, but it's only ignorant in naming the newest forms of the influence it speaks so perceptively about.
The focus of this book is on the critical evaluation of the music industry, the music television industry (MTV), the film industry and the impact they have on the teen population. It's chapters plod much deeper into these issues than I'm able to do here without opening a can of worms, but their insight is invaluable. Being twenty-five years old, I learned as much about myself and the influence of the media on my own life as I did about the media itself.
This book suggests that we have today is a "generation gap" that has been created by the media. Youth have been isolated from the more traditional worlds of previous generations, their parents included. The promise of the media is that of intimacy, identity, meaning and guidance, but the teens pay a price. Today's youth have a greater feeling of disillusionment, boredom, fatigue, addiction, abuse, narcissism and suicide than ever before. Cultural distinctions have been blurred and distant images have taken the place of intimate relationships. The youth today have a culture all their own. The media tells them what music rocks, what clothes look good, what to say to their girlfriend/boyfriend and what are good goals to shoot for in life. However, the media must evolve at a breakneck pace to keep up with teenagers because teens are fickle. The media must constantly reflect the youth culture in order to continue upholding it. It is a reciprocal relationship that pours gasoline on the fire of our consumer driven culture. Teens buy more music and watch more movies than the rest of the population combined even though they only comprise about one-fifth of the population. Why? Largely because their emotions are unstable on the journey from childhood to adulthood and our consumerist society has thought it good to capitalize on the opportunity to make a buck.
I found this book to be a great level-headed approach toward the media from a Christian perspective. Obviously film, music and other forms of electronic media have value if used correctly and intelligently. We must make the effort to separate the wheat from the chaff using discernment and analyze the content, form and function of popular art so we can truly benefit from it in it's rightful context. Instead of bashing what teens place great value in, this book suggests asking the question, "What is it in the media that tries to meet the legitimate needs in teens?". Kids have real needs, and the better we understand them and the better we understand how the media tries to meet those needs, the better we will be able to reach and serve the teens.
For Christians with brains only Apr 11, 2000
These five profs from Calvin College address the complex web of youth culture and the electronic media from a Christian perspective laced with compassion, intelligence, and thought-provoking perception. They are not going to stand up -- like so many other evangelicals -- and lambaste youth culture for its excesses, bad taste, foul language, etc. (though they don't look kindly at these things, either); instead, they seek to see WHY such things appeal to youth, honing in particuarly on our culture's institutional SEPARATION of youth from adults. Very provocative and level-headed. Highly recommended for Biblical thinkers who want to grapple with what is going on in the heads of young rockers and video-philes.