Media Marathoning: Immersions in Morality

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9780739196748: Media Marathoning: Immersions in Morality

In an era of binge-watching and streaming media, Lisa Glebatis Perks's excellent Media Marathoning: Immersions in Morality will undoubtedly become a staple read. Through empirical audience data and textual analysis, Perks uncovers the moral lessons inscribed in our most popular texts. Whether you "media marathon" yourself or know someone lost for weeks in their own marathon session, this eminently readable volume will help you understand the people who love to binge and the texts they love to binge on. You may just find yourself, like the marathoners described in this book, unable to stop... -- Paul Booth, DePaul University Perks' Media Marathoning represents a much needed analysis of an increasingly popular and significant way we engage with popular media texts today. That we now increasingly use marathoning as a means to connect with our favorite movies, TV shows, books, and games whilst also sharing that experience with friends and family in a social setting represents a dramatic shift in how we understand the media and our relationship with it. Perks uniquely discusses this relationship and presents a thoroughly researched and fascinating book that fills a gap in current scholarship on media audiences, morality, and the evolving practices of media consumption. -- Lincoln Geraghty, University of Portsmouth

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The popular press is abuzz with accounts of "binge-watching," a verb that made the Oxford Dictionary's short-list for 2013 word of the year. This book analyzes readers' and viewers' sustained and immersive forays into story worlds, but rejects the negatively-connoted phrase "binge-watch" in favor of "media marathoning." Rather than view these media experiences as mindless indulgences, "media marathoning" connotes a conjoined triumph of commitment and stamina. Media Marathoning: Immersions in Morality is the first sustained scholarly study of this intense, pleasurable relationship between reader and story world. As digital technologies facilitate easier, user-centered access to media texts, narratives increase in complexity, and more readers seek engaged story world experiences, marathoning looks to be the new normal of media engagement. Drawing from qualitative studies of book, film, and television marathoners, along with textual analysis of commonly marathoned stories, this book presents a holistic look at marathoning's cultural impact. This book argues that the practice of media marathoning invites readers to place themselves in the story and negotiate the nuances of morality. Compared to more traditional, slower-paced media engagement patterns, media marathoning affords readers greater depth of story world engagement, maximizing the emotional and cognitive rewards of the media experience. Through our immersive marathoning experiences, we can seriously engage with mediated questions about human nature and society, refining our orientation toward morality through internal dialogue about the story and communication with other readers as we process the meaningful journey.

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