Politics, Civil Society and Participation: Media and Communications in a Transforming Environment

Title chapter: From dogmatism to open-mindedness? Historical reflections on methods in audience reception research
Author: Kim Christian Schrøder
Keywords: audiences, reception research, methodology, qualitative methods, quantitative methods, mixed methods, methodological pluralism
Abstract: The article traces, from the perspective of audience reception research, the gradual methodological rapprochement of once hostile methodological paradigms: quantitatively oriented uses-and-gratifications research and qualitatively anchored reception research. While recognizing that the methodological differences stem ultimately from different epistemological perspectives, the article describes how these differences have been played out on the terrain of empirical methodologies for conducting fieldwork on audience practices and meanings. The article considers four stages of this rapprochement: (1) antagonistic self-sufficiency; (2) separate camps; (3) self-critical coexistence; and (4) complementarity and collaboration.
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