Interacting with data visualisation in the news media
Data visualisation – in the forms of graphs, charts, and maps – represents a text type growing in prevalence and impact in many cultural domains; education, journalism, business, PR, and more. Research on data visualisation reception is scarce, particularly that related to interactive and dynamic forms of data visualisation in digital media. Taking an approach inspired by grounded theory, in this article I investigate the ways in which young students interact with data visualisations found in digital news media. Combining observations from reading sessions with ten in-depth interviews, I investigate how the informants read, interpreted, and responded emotionally to data visualisations including visual metaphors, interactivity, and animation.
Chinese soft power can be assessed in many aspects because there are several tools in which soft power can manifest. This article seeks to assess the efficiency of China’s soft power using four tools from the perspective of public diplomacy. The analysis helps us to better understand the efficiency of foreign public communication tools. The paper is mainly qualitative research from collected secondary materials, following Mark Leonard’s (2002a) concept of three dimensions of public diplomacy. The tools considered are: the Confucius institute (cultural institutes); Belt and Road initiative summit 2017 (international events); China central television/CCTV (media); International Students (financial aid for researchers and students). The analysis uses the three dimensions of public diplomacy: daily communication, strategic communication, and long-term communication. There is no indication that any of the selected four tools resonates with any of the three dimensions of public diplomacy. Some tools resonate more than others with a particular dimension of public diplomacy, but nothing is set in place. The media use daily communication quite effectively. International events are more so in strategic communication. Both international students and the cultural institute have an advanced role in long-term communication. However, the three dimensions are important to asses expected outcomes in foreign relations. A single tool could not effectively serve all concerns for getting support within the international community. The limitations of a tool can curb its appeal for a particular dimension, while advantages of the same tool spring in another.
The German Democratic Republic on Finnish television
Laura Saarenmaa and Marie Cronqvist
This article opens a new perspective on Finland’s Cold War history by highlighting the role of the Finnish Broadcasting Company (YLE) in providing information about the German Democratic Republic as a particular polity, economy, and key player in the European Cold War landscape. The analysis is based on search results from the YLE digital database (Metro) from 1970–1989, and it is supported by documents from the German Broadcasting Archive [Deutsches Rundfunkarchiv] and the YLE company archive. The archive documents and metadata testify about a long-term interest in East Germany in Finnish television, as well as long-term contacts and collaboration between East German and Finnish television companies, in the executive as well as at grass roots levels.
Recent news often compares current Italian policy to that of Central Europe – especially Hungary. The latest elections brought victory to right-wing populism in Italy and the Visegrad countries – especially in Hungary and Poland – with the key points of their discourse concentrated on similar topics such as Euroscepticism, migration and security, which are tightly connected to the refugee question. Right-wing theories have historical traditions both in Italy (Fascism) and Central Europe (rightist and extreme rightist parties) that I think important to summarise, as some of their elements can also be found in the political thinking of nowadays. The paper presents the main parties of Italy and those of the Visegrad countries and compares their common elements to see whether Italy can politically belong to Central Europe.
My study is an analysis of the emergence of the “Golden Dream” narrative in Romania, right after World War I. Along the way, I make some theoretical contributions to cultural trauma studies. ‘Winner’ and ‘loser’ are terms used to define fixed situations. Usually, only the loser (the victim, defeated) might suffer a trauma, while the occurrence of trauma is denied for the winner (the perpetrator, victor). We shall dig a little deeper and wider, demonstrating that Romania, an overall winner of WWI, will face, right after victory, a ‘cultural shock’ which has to be repressed, as part of the “Golden Dream” narrative. Through a detailed, economic, social and political analysis, I’ll be trying to argue that a shattering trauma has engendered in Romanian society; yet another addition to a whole ‘traumatic history’. The ensuing orthodox ethnonationalism takes its root from this trauma. From time-to-time, we will take a comparative glance at the trauma of the loser, particularly when we will be discussing the omissions of an otherwise seamless narrative.
The CEE countries are celebrating the 15th anniversary of joining the European Union. The ‘feast’ is also of note because the EP elections are just in front of us. Instead of weighing up the expected results, we can surmise that the resolution of Central European voters is now weaker in terms of belonging to the European community and their trust in democratic institutions is also considerably lower than it was in the transition era. But what happened? The answer is too complex to be summarised in just one study; the examination of this issue would require a complex analysis of facts from economic transformation to transitions in social and economic subsystems. Of these elements, I wish to introduce the system-level transformation and the current state of civil society.
This paper seeks to provide an overview of Hungary’s foreign policy priorities since the change of the political system of 1989–90. It intends to critically analyse the rise of pragmatism, in particular, in the new policy chapters of the ‘Turn towards the East’ and the ‘Opening to the South’, while it also looks at the international system itself with its recent developments and how Hungary has behaved in relation to them. Focal attention will be given to certain regions of the world, together with some global issues such as China, Turkey, Russia and Sub-Saharan Africa, as well as the ongoing refugee crisis and climate change.
In the past decade, Joseph Nye’s concept of soft power has become a popular tool for analysing and explaining foreign policy directions of countries that lack significant capacities of hard power. Beyond other states, Hungary has also received special attention in this regard as several surveys and indexes have measured a high increase in its soft power efficiency. This paper attempts to analyse how Hungarian domestic and external political approaches supported this assumed progress and seeks to understand how political values, governance practices and foreign policy strategies have influenced the effectiveness of Hungarian soft power. The paper will argue that the recent Hungarian political directions have produced controversial outcomes and the populist orientation has increased and, at the same time, constrained the effectiveness of soft power. It has increased because populist rhetoric has created a much larger international fame and agenda-setting capacity than would have been expected from a small Central European country. However, it has also been constrained because controversial domestic and conflicting foreign policies were rejected by the European moderate majority. As a result, today, Hungarian external policies suffer from a serious deficit of legitimacy and moral authority which significantly limit the presumed progress of soft power.