Cultural diversity

Publications and Studies

Mainstream, by Frédéric Martel

How do you create a best-seller, a hit, or a blockbuster? After failing in China, will Disney and Murdoch fare better in India? Why are Bollywood films a hit with Africans and Brazilian soap operas taking Russia by storm? Why do Walloons prefer dubbed films while the Flemish prefer subtitles? These are just a few of the questions tackled by researcher and journalist Frédéric Martel in his most recent work, entitled Mainstream. According to publisher Flammarion:

“Frédéric Martel’s search led him from Hollywood to Bollywood, from Japan to sub-Saharan Africa, from Al Jazeera headquarters to Qatar, and all the way to Mexican TV titan Televisa. What he found is new, fascinating, and alarming. A world war of content is underway.

“At the heart of the war is ‘mainstream’ culture. New countries are emerging with their own media and forms of mass entertainment. The Internet magnifies their power. Everything is moving faster. In India, Brazil, and Saudi Arabia, a battle is raging to dominate the Web and wield ‘soft power.’ It is a battle for control over words, images, and dreams.

Mainstream is the fruit of extensive research […] carried out in 30 countries over 5 years. Frédéric Martel interviewed over 1,200 people in the world’s entertainment capitals. He describes how the major players move and think, and traces content circulation across five continents...”

To find out more, visit the Flammarion website.