Social Studies

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SOCIAL STUDIES
ASSIGNMENT: FINAL ESSAY

ZAHRA HUSEINI
110031338
Foundation in Communication
Semester 2

SOCIAL STUDIES ESSAY
How has mass media in your country educated the expatriates and foreigners about your culture and traditions? How the mass media enlightens them about people’s behavior and social norms? Pakistan is a liberal country with a population of 180 million. Although it is a Muslim state with a Muslim majority of 90% yet the country is governed by the principles of the First Amendment and hence practices the Five Basic Freedoms; Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Petition, Freedom of Religion, Freedom of Speech and even Freedom of Press. In Pakistan although the censorship board is active and effective but following the Freedom of Press and Freedom of Speech, it gives everyone, especially mass media rights to publish, print and broadcast anything and everything. Since the introduction of internet and television, print media has suffered a little and has lost its place amongst its audience but nonetheless, it still remains to be vital source of information especially in the rural areas of Pakistan. A major event in the history of Pakistani media occurred when in 2000 General Parvez Musharraf introduced the Freedom of press Act and thereby gave private companies permission to operate their private TV channels and hence compete with the national TV channel knows as PTV (Pakistan Television). It resulted in many private TV channels broadcasting new and exciting shows and dramas 24hours a day. This helped in people returning to their own media rather than relying on the international media as the source of entertainment, which was greatly influencing the young minds to become more Westernised. The first ever private TV channel was Geo after which several others such as ARY, Indus Vision, Hum etc started their transmissions. Currently, Pakistan has around 250 private TV channels which are being watched all over Pakistan. Some are even being broadcasted internationally such as Geo, Hum and ARY. Pakistani media is a reflection of Pakistani culture and society. Most of the Pakistani dramas are popular just because of the fact that people find them to be so realistic. They are actually able to relate to the story and the characters as the same thing is being faced by them in their home or society. The dramas are a depiction of social issues prevailing in the society and always end with a solution. Through such drama serials, audience does not only become aware but also finds an answer to the problems they are facing. For example; a most common social issue in Pakistani culture is the amount of trouble a women faces while she is living with her in-laws in the joint family system. Most of the Pakistani dramas would be based on this issue and hence they highlight the wrong that is done to the woman and how she needs to react to help herself out of such situations. At the same time, they are instructing the society to be kind to their daughter in laws as they too are someone’s daughter who leave the comfort of their home just for their husbands’ sake. A variety of shows are being broadcasted on Pakistani TV channels amongst them are morning shows, celebrity talk shows, political talk shows, music and dance shows, sports shows, cooking shows, educational talk shows etc. But the common thing about all of them is that they all highlight Pakistan’s culture, traditions, beliefs, social issues and social norms. They portray the lifestyle of a common Pakistani and how we think, act and behave in various situations and crisis. For example; the morning shows talk about the lifestyle of a common Pakistani. The political talk shows cover debates and discussions about Pakistan’s political issues and how it is affecting the country’s image and economy. The music and dance shows promote regional /folk dance and music. Whereas the cooking shows share the recipes of all the famous Pakistani cuisine. So you...
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