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TELEVISION AND SOCIAL CONSTRUCTION OF REALITY IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY IN ENUGU METROPOLIS


Project topic for Mass Communication department

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background of the Study

Everyone wants to look perfect always and would wants to be fabulous from others. Whether current or past time, fashion always been involved in peoples’ lives; they always keep looking for new ways which introduced new fashion. Well dressing is a big part of beauty, it’s not only reflect one’s personality but also represents the glow of beauty because if any one’s facial features are not attractive, figure is not slim, skin color is not fair or not have ideal height then trendy apparels can cover these defects(Berger, n.d.).

Fashion in apparel is a process in which old fashion is presented in a new look. Television, fashion shows and magazines are the major factors which change apparel of people (Kiran, Riaz, Malik, 2002, p. 378). Obviously, the modern era is the era of globalization; in which media especially television has made the earth as a global village, it removes the distance.

In present media is involve in everything; either it’s create ways for lunching something or play a role in destroying anything. According to “Media in fashion”, today is the world of media; few decades ago, fashion was not so much popular in the society but now it makes it place in the field of media and now it has been established as a big industry, it provides awareness about the latest trendy fashion among the people through television and other influential media McFatter (2005, May) conducted study for measuring the number women of United Kingdom who become fashion addicted and he found that large number of women adopt different fashions through media like Television shows, movies, magazines, etc. According to Zeb, Rashid & Bilal, (2011, p. 225) there was an era when people want to wear their traditional dresses like salwarkameez; obviously today people were salwarkameez but fashion has changed the look of salwarkameez, in other words fashion with different sort of clothes has bring variation in traditional clothes.Television,  offers the medium for introducing new trend, new fashion and new brands for people which gradually becomes part of their clothing (Walsh, Mitchell, Thurau, 2001, p. 73). According to David (2009) fashion wasalso in but not so, before the popularity of television; now each house has one or more than one Television, also has cable connection or dish which provide numerous fashion shows containing new dress designs which took the people in the world of glamour.

McClung & Holdorf (n.d.) argues that clothes are the most important thing but in present era it cannot remain within one shape. They also have said that with the passage of time, somewhat fashion has made its place in culture; slowly and steadily people are accepting latest trend and want to know the updates about the upcoming fashion which mostly provided through the media because media set a trend for us through magazines, social media or television and in through television, fashion shows play a role of providing latest news regarding latest fashion.

Fashion exist in the culture and it adopt or modify culture; the process of adopt or modify culture start with radio, television, fashion shows, internet, social websites, newspaper, banners, billboards, advertisements or through magazines because people have to deal with these mediums several times in a day which leave impact on the outfits of people (Barnes, & Greenwood, 2006, p. 261).

Today everyone wants to make his or her own identity because media is playing a role of teacher and creating a splendid image of ideal personality; to some extent media is succeed in this purpose because today television has become integral part of each home and children, teenagers, youth or adults have easy access to it; this access, in some way, portray their image as the persons who appear on Television screen and incentives them to adopt innovation in their clothes (Hamely, 2001).Television is a most viewing medium of mass media in Nigeria because Nigeria is a developing country where mostly people are illiterate; they can easily get knowledge and information by watching television; by taking the advantage of this, Indian and western countries move their culture, norms, values, custom, traditions, education and fashion towards the Muslim culture by using electronic media (Akbar, 2009)

According to Ahmad (2011)  television is the main mediums which give the way to fashion industry for changing our way of living by promoting branded items, apparels, footwear, jewelries and other accessories No doubt media has made teenagers fashion conscious; teenage girls often try to shape their body, to make their identities, try to look beautiful by adopting different fabulous apparel and want to look a beauty with appear on the screen of television (Brandon 2011).

The world television refers to the meaning of a system which alters the visuals and sounds into the electronic signals and then people can see the combination of visual and sound on the screen (Oxford, 2012).

All mediums of mass media have a significant effect on the lives of audience but no one has a power like television (Porter, n.d.).According to Characteristics of television as a medium (n.d., p. 17) television has both visuals and sounds, which makes television different from other mediums. Moreover, on this, people can see everything which they want without going anywhere; means people can see cricket, movies or other shows at home without investing money on tickets (p. 18).Through this medium people see different channels on screen, which frame the minds of people for adopting the culture of others (Baloch, 2011). She continues, television also leave long lasting effects in the shape of fashion, emotion, mental disturbance and fear.

1.2       Statement of the Research Problems

The television has this acclaimed distinction among all other forms of media owing to its audiovisual qualities. Thus television has become more popular and most patronized.

However, there have been mix opinions on the reality constructed by television on fashion industry. People have diverse views on whether the television actually represents the image it bears as a tool for social construction of reality in the industry. Some people argue the relevance of the television in the fashion industry many others question the power of television in convincing audience of projected fashion. Against this backdrop, this study is set to investigate television as a tool for social construction of reality in the fashion industry using Enugu Urban residents as a study.

1.3       Objectives of the Study

1. To know the impact of television as a tool in the fashion industry

2. To find out whether television can be used as a means of uplifting thefusion industry in Enugu Urban.

3.  To ascertain the influence of television on its viewers as it relates to fashion in Enugu Urban

4.  To determine whether the reality constructed by television viewers on fashion in Enugu urban has helped to uplift fashion industry in Enugu Urban.

1.4       Relevance of the Study                                   

This study will be very beneficial to the management of television stations who may find it useful in evaluating their strength in construction of reality in fashion industry.

The fashion industry will as well benefit from this study because it will serve as a means of evaluating the perception of the people on the projection of television on fashion world. It will as well aid their choice of most reliable media for the construction of reality in fashion industry.

The students in related fields will also benefit from this study by using its findings as a reference point.

Researchers in related fields who may find this work useful as a background of further studies will also benefit from this study.

1.5       Research Questions

1. To what extent has television made any positive impact as a tool of reality construction in the fashion industry?2. to what extent can television be used as a means of uplifting the fashion industry in Enugu Urban?

3.  To what extent has television positively influenced its viewers as it relates to fashion in Enugu Urban?

4. to what extent has the reality constructed by television viewers on fashion in Enugu urban helped to uplift fashion industry in Enugu Urban?

1.6       Research Hypotheses

H1: Television has made any positive impact as a tool of reality construction in the fashion industry

H0: Television has not made any positive impact as a tool of reality construction in the fashion industry

H2: Television can be used as a means of uplifting the fashion industry in Enugu Urban

H0:  Television cannot be used as a means of uplifting the fashion industry in Enugu Urban

H3: Television has positively influenced its viewers as it relates to fashion in Enugu Urban

H0:  Television has negatively influenced its viewers as it relates to fashion in Enugu Urban

H4.  The reality constructed by television viewers on fashion in Enugu urban has to a large extent helped to uplift fashion industry in Enugu Urban.

H0:  The reality constructed by television viewers on fashion in Enugu urban has to a large extent not helped to uplift fashion industry in Enugu Urban.

1.7   Theoretical Framework

Cultivation Theory

This study has used the cultivation theory presented by George Gerbner.  According to this theory, television hides the real truth and creates another world, which is considering a real world according to the viewers of Television Gerbner argues that the medium of television is most watched, if anyone is regular watcher of television then television will cultivate a way of understanding the world (in his/her view), it will led him or her in the world of misunderstanding (Schiappa, 2008, p. 13). For example: If people mostly watch fashion shows on television, they must see a different style of dressing that may different from the clothes which he or she wears. After this he/she will think television always provide true information then which dressing style is broadcasting on it, it is right and which he or she wear, is not fit according to the television broadcasting. Then he or she will create another world, which misguide them. So television plays a role of story teller which tell a different story to different viewers, either the story is true or not (Facts, 2011).

Schiappa (2008, p. 13) says by watching more television bring change in the attitude of the viewers rather than the behavior. Television does not focally push the individual for accepting the change, it lightly pulls the individual for accepting and adopting the change; this light process change the attitude of the viewers towards the unreal world. Gerbner also says that this theory produce effects on levels, which are known as first order effects (learn facts from media) and second order effects (learn tentative answer about general believes from media) (Wikipedia, 2004).

Thus, the television creates an air of reality and re-enforces the passion for fashion in the lives of viewers over time through its programmes like fashion parades, beauty pageants, reality shows etc.

1.8       Scope of the Study

This study covers Television as a tool for social construction of  reality in the fashion industry using Enugu Urban residents as a study.

1.9 Limitations of the Study

Inadequate fund for the study: The researcher needed money at every stage of the study to make it appear empirical, but due to the scarcity of money, researcher could not buy all the needed research material during the study;

Unavailability of most research Tools

Most of the research materials needed by the researcher were not available when the researcher needed them. For instance some books that treated issues concerning fashion industry were not readily available when the researcher needed them.  This caused a lot of delay in assembling and writing of the project

People’s unwillingness to give out information   

Most people whom the researcher approached for information could not give out information needed for the study. They were fearful that their names could be made public or their statements misinterpreted;

Irrespective of these problems, the researcher was able to make proper use of the research materials within reach and the study was successfully completed.


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