LSE Summer School

19th May 2008

POLIS will once again be participating in the LSE's forthcoming Summer School in July. The Summer program and 'International Journalism and Society – The Role of the Media in the Modern World' will be taught by POLIS Director Charlie Beckett in partnership with Media and Communications staff:

Dr Shani Orgad (Lecturer, Media and Communications, LSE)
Professor Lilie Chouliaraki (Media and Communications, LSE)
Dr Bart Cammaerts (Lecturer, Media and Communications, LSE)
Outline

We live in a world where information is an increasingly critical resource. The news media play a crucial role in the production and dissemination of that information and so it is vital to understand their role in the modern world. To do so, it is necessary to analyse how the news media are undergoing profound change. Participants in this course will emerge with a better understanding of the shifts taking place in the practices, forms and processes within the news media and their consequences for the role of journalism in contemporary society.

The first part of the course will introduce students to the current news media landscape and the contexts within which journalism operates. It will highlight the changes journalism is undergoing, particularly in the context of digital and online media and their implications for the concepts underpinning journalism practice. We will look at the different theories of journalism and the challenges and opportunities presented by new media – what different does it really make for journalistic practice? The discussion will highlight the globalisation of media and the debate around the way that media connect different people across time and space. This theme will be illustrated by focusing on the case study of the Danish Cartoon Controversy.

The second part of the course will examine the role of journalism in the international context and the moral challenges it faces. The discussion will focus on the moral role and the ethical consequences of journalism in reporting on suffering. It will examine questions around the coverage of humanitarian issues from both the societal and newsroom perspectives. It will critically examine the opportunities and challenges of representing 'distant others' who are miles away from Western viewers, looking at the representation of humanitarian emergencies and the role of the news media in Development.

The third part of the course will examine three particular areas where journalism has direct impact on society: politics and war; community conflict and new media; and politics and celebrity. The question at the heart of this concluding part of the course is: How can the news media make a real difference in today's world? The discussion will enable students to integrate what has been studied in the first two parts and apply it to a critical exploration of journalism's role in the contemporary world.
Texts

C. Beckett, SuperMedia, Blackwell, (May 2008)
R. Silverstone, Media and Morality, Polity (2006)
L Chouliaraki, Spectatorship of Suffering, Sage, (2006)

To find out more about the course as well as the Summer School programme at LSE, consult the Summer School Prospectus.

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