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Media and Their Publics by Michael Higgins

By Michael Higgins

This obtainable and thought-provoking ebook presents a serious perception into the connection among the media and the general public. It examines the way the general public is represented, noted and portrayed within the media, and the way the media acts or speaks at the public’s behalf. the 1st half explores the political facet of the connection among the media and the general public. This contains attention-grabbing dialogue of advocacy in political interviews and the discursive association of political dialogue programmes. the second one a part of the e-book examines a number discourses open air of the political realm. Michael Higgins seems on the building of ordinariness, authenticity and public legitimacy, the connection among institutional and media services, and the workout of public decency. He argues that what unites the relationships among media and kinds of public are their trouble with wider problems with politics, governance, and cultural effect. the writer deals more than a few illustrative examples of broadcasting from US, Australian and British contexts, delivering scholars with a rage of enticing foreign examples with which to attract comparisons and examine their very own media studies. every one bankruptcy comprises suggested texts for additional analyzing and questions for dialogue. The Media and Their Publics is a necessary textual content for college students and researchers in media experiences, cultural coverage and political communications.

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First, we will look at the discourse of the media professional as a public inquisitor, and how forms of populism are deployed in strategies of representation. We will then look at the emerging role of the entertainment talk show as a forum of political discussion, and reflect upon its potential as a form of media advocacy. Our main task throughout the chapter will be to assess the political and cultural implications of these developments in the political public. The media and political responsibility In his classic assessment of the modern capitalist state, Ralph Miliband (1973: 198) emphasizes the central role of the means of mass communication, and the relative strength of the larger circulation newspapers and broadcast organizations.

The essential 'star' qualities of public inquisitors, as foremost defenders of public interest and legitimacy, mean they are necessarily limited in number at any given time. The United States has a history of such licensed interrogators, and Walter Cronkite, Barbara Walters, Ted Koppel and Dan Rather have been among the most notable. Current such advocates in the UK include Kirsty Wark, John Humphrys and Jeremy Paxman, all from the BBC, while Australia's roster includes Laurie Oakes of Channel Nine and Liz Jackson of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

As its legalistic connotations would suggest, the advocacy approach figuratively positions media as the holders of a brief from the political public, and therefore professionally engaged on the public's behalf. So rather than untrained and haphazardly informed members of the general political 36 MEDIA AND THEIR PUBLICS public quizzing and investigating those in authority, such duties fall to those media professionals deemed to have the appropriate skills and personal bearing. The advocacy approach also means that the resources of the media institution work for the public good: including pools of trained investigators, reporters, questioners and archivists, all bringing official access to political and institutional circles through such arrangements as press passes and 'political lobby' memberships.

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