Media Ethics - ARTS5210

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2023 to 2024.


This module seeks to investigate some of the most pressing ethical issues in contemporary media culture and the mediated arts. Topics may include: violence in video games, nudity on the screen and in advertising, anti-heroes and villains in fiction, propaganda and manipulation, sexism and racism in humor, shock value in the news and in contemporary art. To answer the many moral questions that arise in this context students will examine basic notions such as truth, objectification, voyeurism, exploitation, offence, harm, gender, and stereotype.


Contact hours

Contact hours: 32
Private Study Hours: 268
Total Study Hours: 300

Method of assessment

30% Seminar Diary (6000 words)
70% Essay (3000 words)

Indicative reading

Gaut, Berys. Art, Emotion and Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007.
Kieran, Matthew. Ed. Media-Ethics., New York: Routledge, 2008. 152-164.
Langton, Rae. Sexual Solipsism: Philosophical Essays on Pornography and Objectification, Oxford University Press, 2009.
Wilkins & Christians. Eds. The Handbook of Mass Media Ethics, Routledge, 2008.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

- Engage in a range of critical debates surrounding media culture and consumption;
- Demonstrate understanding of some of the key moral issues and ethical dimensions of contemporary media practices;
- Demonstrate understanding of theoretical discourse regarding media representation and the formation of identities within digital domains;
- Examine the moral, social and cultural impact of mediation on communication and everyday life;
- Reflect upon their own role and responsibilities in relation to ethical media practices.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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