Communication and Multimedia Journalism Capstones

Online via Zoom

The Department of Communication Arts will organize a public presentation and peer review for the capstones of the students enrolled in the Communication and Multimedia Journalism programs for spring 2020.

Join Zoom meeting

Meeting ID: 946 2048 6914

Password: LAU123


2:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.: Lynn Karam - The Underrepresented Drag Community in Lebanon

2:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.: Noura Fayad - Raising Awareness about Fashion Sustainability

3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.: Karen Zeenny and Sarah Hamieh - Female Gender Discrimination in Advertisement in Lebanon: Campaigning for an Antithesis

3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.: Rajab Manna - Development of Public Sports Facilities in Saida, Lebanon

Capstone Abstracts

The Underrepresented Drag Community in Lebanon

By Lynn Karam

Article 534 of the Lebanese Penal Code states that any “unnatural” act, which includes homosexual sex, is a crime. This article has been abused to ban the already present, but very underground LGBTQI+ community in Lebanon. Drag is one of the most powerful forms of expression by the LGBTQI+ community in Lebanon. However, drag shows can only take place in environments known by members and allies of the community. This capstone project aims to analyze the socio-political structure in which drag fits into the Lebanese society. This project investigates several research questions. The first asks how the drag scene in Lebanese media is being underrepresented in contrast to Western media. The second set of questions guiding the production of a short documentary include: How is Western media influencing local media portrayal of drag in Lebanon? How can Lebanese media improve public understanding of the local drag scene? Journalistic interviews and archived data from Lebanese news outlets are the primary and secondary sources for this project.

Raising Awareness about Fashion Sustainability

By Noura Fayad

The fashion sector is among the world’s fastest-growing industries, yet is also one of the most polluting sectors. What many may not be aware of is the negative impact that the fast fashion sector has on the environment and workers. Therefore, for this project, a digital magazine was created to look like a fashion magazine, but using culture jamming and subversive tactics. The goal of the magazine is to raise awareness among LAU students (especially fashion majors) around the problems of the fashion industry, including exploitation of workers, child labor, and polluting the environment. The magazine also highlights the importance of slow fashion and offers sustainable and equitable practices for fashion consumers and designers. This project first gathered secondary research from previous studies to investigate the labor and ecological threats of the fashion sector. Primary research was then conducted through a focus group to gather insights and tailor the magazine’s content. An online Instagram page was created to promote the magazine’s content and a post-survey was facilitated to test the impact of the product.

Female Gender Discrimination in Advertisement in Lebanon: Campaigning for an Antithesis

By Karen Zeenny and Sarah Hamieh

Media content, especially advertisements, play a crucial role in shaping the perceptions, beliefs and knowledge of the recipient audience. However, this impact can be either negative or positive, depending on the communicated messages. One of the ways through which advertisements can create negative viewer perceptions is in the case of the female gender, often constructing a false imagery of women by depicting them wrongfully in positions that are either degrading, discriminatory or for pure sex appeal. This problem is well prevalent in Lebanese advertisements, leading to distorted understanding of the true role of females in our society. This necessitates a closer examination of how females are negatively portrayed in the Lebanese advertising scene and providing a more balanced, female-friendly alternative. In this study, we aim to provide an antithesis – a direct opposite example – of how females are portrayed in Lebanese advertisements. To that end, we conducted a content and semiotic analysis of a sample of 10 local advertisements from billboard and online sources which all depicted females. They were then juxtaposed with 10 alternative advertisements that showed females in a more empowered, nondiscriminatory position. A social media poll was launched asking a sample of social media users to express their perception of each advertisement. The results, in addition to reference to existing literature, were used to support a set of practical recommendations for advertising companies to adopt in order to provide a more accurate portrayal of females in their advertisements.

Development of Public Sports Facilities in Saida, Lebanon

By Rajab Manna

This capstone project addresses the lack of public sports facilities in Saida, Lebanon, having an effect on the health of the population, mainly effecting weight issues. The lack of facilities also leads to children in Saida being discouraged to become professional athletes. The aim of this capstone project is to research and implement a strategic communication campaign that raises awareness about the need for proper and public sports facilities for the residents of Saida. An online survey was conducted targeting those who live in the city, or previously have lived in Saida, to get more insight on their attitude towards developing a public sports facility in the city. Interviews were also conducted with trainers and experts in the field to see what can be done to raise awareness and who should be responsible in implementing a facility in Saida. This research informed the design and implementation of the online communication campaign.

Academic supervisor: Dr. Gretchen King