Media Marathoning: Immersions in Morality is a scholarly study of the intense relationship between reader and story world, analyzing the way audiences become absorbed in a fictive text and dedicate many hours to exploring its narrative contours. Rather than view these media experiences as mindless indulgences, “media marathoning” connotes a conjoined triumph of commitment and stamina. 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 immersive marathoning experiences, audiences 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. As digital technologies facilitate easier, user-centered access to media texts, narratives increase in complexity, and more readers seek immersive 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, Media Marathoning presents a holistic look at marathoning’s cultural impact.
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Lisa Glebatis Perks is assistant professor and program director of communication and media at Nazareth College.Review:
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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