Possibilities And Challenges Of Interpretation Of Multimodal Texts In Media Education


The shift towards the visuals in mass media has brought us new understanding of the role of the image in multimodal texts. Images play a most significant role in meaning making. The interpretation of the multimodal text is fraught with a number of problems arising from the interaction of the visual and the verbal parts of the text. The present study is aimed at exploring possibilities and challenges of interpretation of multimodal texts. The sample materials of the study are the readers’ comments about the photo essay on the Esquire magazine website and thematic Internet forums. Using the category of informativeness and closely related categories of evaluation and modality, the authors suggested a system of the multimodal text analysis based on the 3 types of information: factual, conceptual and subtext. The study has produced the following findings. 1) Readers mostly demonstrate superficial reading comprehension of multimodal texts limited by associations and emotional perception while losing some of the conceptual and subtext information with little critical thinking. 2) The comments left by the readers were quite similar, which shows a one-view angle and stereotyped readers’ perception of the text. 3) All-level interpretations of the multimodal text require a skilful visually-literate reader. 4) More objective findings require analysis of comments of “more skilful” readers such as photo critics, journalists and art critics who can comprehend the conceptual and subtext information in depth.

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31 March 2022

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1st Edition




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Abrosimova, E. A., Kravchenko, Y., Kulamikhina, I. V., Shkaiderova, T. V., & Yarmak, O. V. (2022). Possibilities And Challenges Of Interpretation Of Multimodal Texts In Media Education. In & I. Savchenko (Ed.), Freedom and Responsibility in Pivotal Times, vol 125. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 66-73). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2022.03.8