Thursday, February 12, 2009

International Journal of Communication Tackles Media Reform

Media reform is the focus of a special symposium recently published in International Journal of Communication, Volume 3 (2009). Our own Annenberg doctoral candidates Dan Berger and C. Riley Snorton contribute individual articles as well as the section's Introduction.

From the Introduction:
"This section — among the first in-depth scholarly examination of media reform—brings together scholars and activist-intellectuals (in and outside of the academy) to examine the media reform struggle. We organized this special section to investigate the ideas and actions of this political project. We wanted, in particular, to examine its origin narrative at a time when the movement appears to be gaining even greater traction as issues like “net neutrality,” low-frequency radio, and other questions of media access are pervasive in popular, scholarly, and activist spheres." They were "intentionally eclectic in soliciting a wide range of voices, which speak to issues of media, democracy, representation, and political engagement." Contributors are prominent figures in the world of media reform and the field of communication: John L. Jackson Jr. (University of Pennsylvania), "Media Reform, 2008's Presidential Election, and the Sportification of Politics"; Robert W. McChesney (University of
Illinois at Champaign-Urbana), "Understanding the Media Reform Movement"; Makani Themba-Nixon (The Praxis Project), "Mainstreams and Margins: A Critical Look at the Media Reform 'Story'"; and Peter Dahlgren (Lund University, Sweden), "Realistic Politics, Uncomfortable Knowledge: Living Creatively with Dissonance."
And be sure to also check out "From Fermentation to Maturity? Reflections on Media and Communication Studies. An Interview with Todd Gitlin, Jostein Gripsrud & Michael Schudson" by Helle Sjøvaag and Hallvard Moe.

"25 years after the Journal of Communication published a special issue entitled 'Ferment in the Field' [published right here at the Annenberg School], Professors Todd Gitlin, Michael Schudson and Jostein Gripsrud reflect on the state of the field of media and communications research. They discuss the conflict between critical and administrative research, the role of the intellectual in today’s society, and the quality of current research on new media."

Edited by Larry Gross and Manuel Castells (both, USC Annenberg School for Communication), IJoC is an open-access, multi-media journal that, "while centered in communication," features contributions "from the many disciplines and approaches that meet at the crossroads that is communication study." It takes the "International" part of its title seriously; beginning only its third year/volume of publication, contributors to the journal represent twenty-five countries from around the world.

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