Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Mass Communication and Media Arts

Advisor

Lawrence, William N; Needham, Jay

Abstract

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Since its release in 1998, director Peter Weir’s The Truman Show has been the focus of numerous studies. In this report, the film is uniquely placed within a perceptual media effects framework (predominantly citing Davison 1983, Neuwirth and Frederick 2002, and Leone, Peek, and Bissell 2006) so as to identify first, second, and third-person effects representations within its text. Consisting of both a written textual analysis as well as an audio supplement, the report identifies three subjects within The Truman Show: Truman, participants of the film’s reality show, and said program’s viewing audience.

Ultimately, the report’s written component provides scenic evidence arguing that Truman is representative of second-person effects traits, the reality show’s participants display varied second and third-person traits, and the program’s viewing audience represents second-person effects. Lyrically, the audio supplement is primarily told from Truman’s perspective and is meant to be a reflexive piece that documents Truman’s transition from a second-person to a first-person effect representative.

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