think in these terms is to be implicitly analysing the world. Let us consider an extended example of the analysis that lies behind this classification. Imagine we are investigating the way in which nationalism is used in Australian television advertising (think, for example, of the QANTAS television commercials with the 'I still call Australia home' theme or Telstra advertisements that emphasise 'We are Australian'). Here are some examples of what we might find when we are guided by the five classes above.3
First, we need to gather material on the specific topic itself. While we might well find material written in advertising magazines (such as Ad News), we would first watch numerous television commercials that use images of Australia. We could interview other viewers; we could talk to advertising agencies. We could compare nationalistic and other advertisements. This class of knowledge is what is usually established by the regular research activities of various scholars and investigators. So, in our own investigation, it is the principal category of knowledge that we are creating.
Second, we should turn to material on the specific background, which is usually found in the writings of other researchers. For example, Paul James's article, 'Australia in the Corporate Image: A New Nationalism'4 discusses in detail the use of Australian nationalism in marketing campaigns in the 1970s.
Third, we need to know about other specific topics with relevant insights. Ruth Abbey and Jo Crawford's 'Crocodile Dundee or Davey Crockett?'5 does not tell us anything about television advertising. But, in its discussion of the nationalist elements of the film Crocodile Dundee, we can find some relevant insights.
Fourth, we need to understand the broad background of the topic, which would involve developing our knowledge of advertising and nationalism. Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism6 includes very little discussion specifically about Australia or advertising but does provide a sophisticated discussion of nationalism. Equally, Stuart Cunningham and Graeme Turner's edited collection The Media in Australia: Industries, Texts, Audiences7 provides a good general background to the 'television' side of our investigation.
Most significantly, we need to gather some information about theoretical perspectives. These perspectives provide a particular way of investigating and thinking about issues. Different theories lead researchers and thinkers to different approaches and to different understandings of what makes premises well founded, relevant, and strong. In particular, theoretical perspectives establish the topic as a topic and set the parameters of investigation. Remember, there are many different ways of understanding the world, which are usually related to various academic disciplines. It was not, for example, until the 1970s that cultural studies (of the popular media) became common. Each theoretical perspective will have different ideas about what exactly is an appropriate topic for investigation and how we should go about it. In broad terms, then, we could think about whether our interest in the topic is, for example, psychological or sociological. We could also think about whether we are developing, for example, a feminist or Marxist critique of this
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