Segments in this Video

Artists and Critics (04:36)


Media artists express their negative opinions about critics. What good do critics do? First of all, critics get us (the general public) to think.

Media Arts Critics: What Do They Do? (04:17)

A "Washington Post" book critic sees his job as "lighting the way" for readers. Film critics help people get the most out of their film dollar. Criticism can also be fun for readers and viewers.

Critics Influence Media Change (03:58)

Criticism of media arts improves the media in general. "Critics can keep artists on their toes," and sometimes critics' remarks give artists the big breaks they hope for.

Influence of Book Critics (01:51)

Book critics are likely the most influential in their ability to benefit new writers. A "New York Times" book critic takes pride in promoting new, good books, but asserts that there are many bad books being written.

Critics: Passionate About Their Medium (04:47)

Critics who are successful enjoy their craft. Some critics develop their love of reading and enjoying plays and shows as very young children. A music critic, passionate about his work, wants the world to experience the same love for music that he has.

Critics as Reporters: Subjectivity and Objectivity (04:36)

Professional critics often find themselves acting as reporters, too. In this example, critics both report and comment on Paul McCartney's performance. The film host discusses objectivity and subjectivity.

Professional Critics: Differences Between Criticism and Reviewing (02:27)

A review is an informed opinion, and criticism is more analytical. Reviewers write for audiences who are unfamiliar with a particular piece of work, whereas a critic expects that their readers are already familiar with the work.

What Is Professional Criticism? (01:50)

Criticism takes a wider view. In this segment, a critic criticizes critics while appearing to be making commentary on the film "Pearl Harbor."

Superior Professional Criticism (01:51)

Criticism is generally delivered by someone willing to take a stand and make an argument. Superior criticism is characterized by how well it makes its argument, how it touches on the human experience, and how useful are its insights.

Criticism as Persuasive Argument (02:09)

Emotional impact is part of criticism as it helps make a persuasive argument either in favor or against the art or artist. Effective criticism requires logic, emotional support, and personal credibility of the critic.

Components of Critical Thinking: Knowledge (02:29)

This segment introduces Bloom and Krathwohl's (1956) taxonomy of critical thinking: knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. The best critics start with their depth and breadth of knowledge.

Components of Critical Thinking: Comprehension and Application (03:57)

Critics understand the media artists they write about and help their readers come to those same understandings. Critics understand how to apply their critical tools appropriately, such as the applying the elements of country music only to country artists and not to hip-hop.

Components of Critical Thinking: Analysis and Synthesis (03:25)

Critics must break down their particular media art into components. Howard Rosenberg "dissects" the television series "Seinfeld" in order to understand the appeal of its humor. "American Idol" is a synthesis of a number of entertainment elements.

Components of Critical Thinking: Evaluation (01:39)

This segment includes a review of the six skills of critical thinking. Using their critical thinking skills, critics then evaluate and draw conclusions, leaving the reader to agree or disagree, or to spark curiosity.

Critics Write With Their Audience in Mind (02:15)

Good criticism must be well constructed and well written. Critics often change "voices" when they write, and they usually have a specific audience in mind when they write.

Process of Good Writing (03:00)

Books, film, television, and music critics share their personal approach to criticism and specific techniques each uses. Critics study their medium carefully, take notes, and work to get their reviews or criticism correct.

How Do Critics Choose Their Material? (02:43)

How do critics choose what to write about? Book critic Maureen Corrigan and music critic Brian Mansfield discuss their processes of choosing and eliminating material to write about.

Elements of Superior Criticism (04:59)

In review: Superior criticism involves critical thinking, good writing, and choosing the right material. The best criticism goes one step further: With media arts as their platform, critics address wider cultural issues.

Danger of Mixing Criticism and Reporting (04:33)

Media critics share the most challenging parts of their jobs. The economics of today's newspapers often force the critic to also take the role of reported--and the danger of this is called "boosterism."

Future of Mass Media Criticism (02:40)

Critics work in different media genre such as books or film, but also genres within a genre such as classical music, jazz, or country western. The Internet provides a new and diverse forum for critics and their followers.

How to Become a Critic (03:28)

The key to becoming a critic is to learn to write, to write, and then to write more. After college graduation, aspiring critics should "start at the bottom" in specific media arts to learn the ropes find are of interest, and discover the "gold standard."

What Is Criticism? (01:32)

Often associated with negativity, criticism is actually the practice of analyzing, classifying, interpreting, or even evaluating literary or other artistic works.

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The Critics: Stories from the Inside Pages

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $179.95
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How do critics serve the public and the artistic community? Dr. Dwight DeWerth-Pallmeyer, director of the Department of Communication Studies at Widener University, spent several months traveling the country and interviewing prominent commentators—including Good Morning America film reviewer Joel Siegel, Time magazine film critic Richard Schickel, Nashville Scene music critic Bill Friskics-Warren, and Fresh Air book critic Maureen Corrigan. The result is an in-depth look at criticism as an art form, the social value of a critic’s work, the various ways that renowned critics began their careers, and the passion and intellect with which all professional critics must approach their work. Some language may be offensive. (75 minutes)

Length: 76 minutes

Item#: BVL36402

ISBN: 978-1-4213-6030-0

Copyright date: ©2006

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