The “Parasocial Contact”

  1. The “Parasocial Contact” article focuses how positive portrayals of gay men or people who are non-gender conforming might foster more positive attitudes towards people in these groups. The article was published 15 years ago and patterns of media content have been shifting. (As have the meanings and implications of specific terms. For example, the article uses “transvestite” to describe comedian Eddie Izzard. This was a term he used to describe himself at the time. However, this is currently considered derogatory due to misuse. According to the LGBTQA Resource Center at UC Davis (Links to an external site.), cross-dresser is now considered more appropriate.) Please consider your classmates’ responses to discussion question 7 in the original post, as well as the mainstream media you’ve seen yourself. Based on your classmates’ responses and your own experience, how have the portrayals of people who are not heterosexual or are gender non-conforming changed in the 15 years? Do you think the changes would make it more likely for audiences develop more positive and inclusive attitudes or not?
  2. Are there other minority or dis-empowered groups that are portrayed in the media in such a way – at least some of the time – that might lead Parasocial Contact effects to occur? Please explain and provide specific examples to explain why you think this would or would or would not happen.

Sample Solution