Just a quick link. I’d love it if the newspaper actually provided links to the various papers mentioned. I’m no huge fan of the “celebrity as an object of study” thing, but snippets of this article stir [my] interest.
The only parts of any value to me in this article are in relation to the connection between media focus and our society — surmised in two short quotations from the piece:
Explaining how Beckham’s career has been littered with Christian symbolism, Brick said redemption, resurrection, and salvation “are the narratives that tell his story”. The footballer’s perception of himself seems to concur: he has appeared in magazines adopting a Christ-like pose, has a crucifix tattoo and named one of his sons Cruz, Spanish for cross.
But Brick’s paper said reading Beckham as postmodern religious icon, a new god of the global consumer culture, was insufficient. “Rather, Beckham’s celebrity speaks to the paradoxical desire to attribute meaning in a culture which is increasingly defined as meaningless…”
Paul McDonald, from Roehampton University in England, pointed out that at the start of last century, press profiles concentrated on political, business and religious leaders, “yet by the 1920s, the focus of that attention had shifted toward coverage of figures in entertainment or sports”. The media’s attention had moved from the idols of production towards idols of consumption.
Still, it’s worth reading the whole article to contextualise those snippets.