Skip to main content


MCH2075 : Representations: Identity, Culture and Society

  • Offered for Year: 2020/21
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Tina Sikka
  • Owning School: Arts & Cultures
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module forms part of the BA (Hons) Media, Communication and Cultural Studies degree. The module examines the relationship between representation and the production of meaning through analysis of a diverse range of contemporary socio-cultural themes, sites and texts. It aims to enable students to interrogate and develop a thorough understanding of the critical links between representation, identity and culture in a transnational and intersectional frame.

Outline Of Syllabus

The module introduces key theoretical and methodological frameworks for the study of representations. We are concerned here not with simply what is represented by how, when, and where and the ramifications of representation. The examines how identities, subjectivities, objects, and places are formed, in part, through systems of representation. The discussion focuses on the production of difference, as well as the capacity of marginal subjects and communities to challenge mainstream representations and negotiate their identities and places. The module interrogates links between representation, and power. Examples are drawn from a wide array of media and cultural texts, including those within film, television, magazines, newspapers, art, literature, advertising, music, photography, and the internet. Our understanding of texts extends to places, objects and bodies.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture122:0024:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion150:0050:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading120:0020:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching121:0012:00Seminars
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity140:0040:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity120:0020:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study134:0034:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

This module examines the links among representation, identity, culture and power and introduces key theoretical and methodological approaches for the study of representations and identities. It uses the formal lectures to provide an initial guide to impart this knowledge. Weekly seminars are employed to allow smaller group discussion and activities which enable critical engagement with key themes, concepts and frameworks. Students also participate in planning and facilitating interactive group presentations in seminars. Together, the lectures and seminars provide the basis through which advanced study of the power relations shaping representation in a transnational world can take place. Alongside the lectures and seminars, weekly drop-in tutorials with the students will take place to provide extra support as and where necessary. These tutorials will invite students to reflect on their own learning practices, leading them to consider the areas they need further support and guidance.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Presentation301A25Group Presentation, scheduled by School
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Portfolio1M15Evidence of group work plus a 500 word critical account relating to individual contribution to presentation.
Essay1A60Essay, 2500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

There are three assessment strategies. The presentation will be group based and will assess critical, theoretical engagement with course themes and concepts, as well as communication and presentation skills, with a view to enhancing inter-personal and organisational capacities. This will be marked as a group. The presentation will be supported by a portfolio of evidence, which will document when the group met, the notes that the individual made and the work undertaken by the individual to support the presentation. The portfolio will also include a 500 word critical account relating to student's own contribution to the presentation and how their slide materials/resources address the presentation brief. The third part of the assessment involves the writing of a 2500 word essay to be selected from a list of questions relating to key topics and themes addressed on the module. Critical thinking will be assessed across all three assessments and academic research, writing and referencing skills will be assessed via the portfolio and essay assignments in particular.

Reading Lists