The Real vs The Reel Project

The Real versus The Reel Project will analyze if mainstream media (news castings, movies, reality shows, etc) has an effect on students’ attitudes and their perception of different nationalities and ethnic groups. This project will include a series of surveying students before and after viewing a clip or sound byte.

How will this be tested?

We will show students a series of clips from movies and articles from popular blogs, newspapers and magazines. Lastly, students will hear a short sound byte from an interview or speech by different public figures. We will also show students statuses and tweets about race relations. Students will take a survey before the clip or article to see their views on international policies and immigration. After viewing a clip/article or listening to a sound byte, students will then take another survey that will ask questions about how they feel and react to people of different nationalities. We will focus on Arabs, African-Americans, Latin Americans/Latinos, Hispanics,  Mexicans and Asians.

The objective of this project is to analyze how the LSU community perceives other citizens who are a different nationality. The Arab American Institute reported that 42% of Americans support the use of racial profiling for Muslims/Arabs by law enforcement. Fox News has recently covered stories about the new film American Sniper and many individuals have taken to social media about their reactions to the film. Furthermore, students will be shown several racial tweets and statuses in their survey and will be asked if they agree or disagree with the user. We will also analyze students’ take on the war and terrorism. We will ask students questions about who they believe is responsible for the war and if the American government should continue to intervene. We will also ask students what they believe is America’s MIP(most important issue).

What is our goal?

We wish to find if there is a trend amongst different nationalities and ethnic groups on campus. We want to find if students’ attitudes are based upon on personal experience(religion, families morals and values, etc) , the media(social media sites, magazines, blogs, news reports, movies, etc.) or if it is a combination.

In the wake of the racially syndicated events such as Charlie Hebdo and Ferguson, we want to analyze if people are forming their judgments and attitudes toward different racial groups based on REAL facts and evidence or through what they have seen through the REEL. We want to test stereotypes! 

Are all Muslims/Arabs terrorist?

Are all Blacks thugs and aggressive?

Are all Mexican/Latinos/Hispanics smugglers?

Are all Asians planning a nuclear attack on America?

We live in a society that has a blind eye to ethnic diversity. We want to test these ideals of racial bigotry and find out how the citizens in our community  feel about these issues.

This study will be conducted by Bianca Webb and Reggie Chapman.

Here are a few examples of how we will incorporate social media.

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