"The Mass Comm Murders" is a novel way (both literally and figuratively) to introduce students to mass communication theory. Berger's latest comic murder mystery again features Inspector Solomon Hunter and his sidekick, Sergeant Talcott Weams, in the search for who is snuffing out a group of media theorists - though only after each, in turn, explains his or her theory of mass communications. Highlighting theories from semiotics to the spiral of silence, Berger combines theoretical discussion with a satire of academia and a parody of the mystery genre, complete with eccentric professors and international intrigue. This fun and accessible text should prove useful as a supplement for courses in mass communication and communication theory.
Arthur Asa Berger is professor of broadcast and electronic communication arts at San Francisco State University.