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Distribution and Use of Image-evoking Language Constructions in Written News

Abstract

Linguistic exposures are image constructions and some of the most distinctive mechanisms in the discourse community of journalism.

By exposing the journalistic writers add focus, detail and substantiation to their stories. Linguistic exposures are tools that evoke images in the readers’ minds and help establish and improve the basis of interest and understanding.

We are combining linguistic and statistical methods to investigate exposures in the news of five Danish national papers in order to determine how widespread it is, and with what force and impact the techniques are used.

Our study contributes to existing knowledge by focusing on form rather than content. We investigate the creative use of specific structural elements of the language as the prevailing contact establishing tools of journalistic discourse. Our data are based on news from Berlingske Tidende, B.T., Politiken, Ekstra Bladet and Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten.

Open access
Mega-Sporting Events and the Media in Attention Economies
National and International Press Coverage of the IAAF World Championships in Helsinki 2005

Abstract

The present article examines the IAAF World Championships as a commercialized mega-sporting event and an expression of the contemporary experience industry. The focus of the empirical analysis is on the national and international press coverage of the World Championships in Helsinki, Finland, 2005. Eleven Finnish and six foreign newspapers were analysed. Finnish pre-Championship publicity saw the games mostly as a tool for achieving international media attention and economic profit. The coverage of the international press was strikingly similar. The newspapers focussed mainly on the sporting events and their perspective was strongly national – perfectly in line with traditional sports journalism. This finding challenges the belief expressed in Finnish newspapers and by proponents of the attention economy that mega-events are powerful tools for urban marketing.

Open access
Narrative Norms in Written News

Abstract

News writing is organized in accordance with a norm usually visualized as an inverted pyramid. The purpose is to support a focus to tell the reader, which information is the most actual, important and relevant.

News is also stories about selected factual events narrated and re-narrated by sources and journalists. The involved communication acts of journalism are important tools in the hands of the writer by means of which news is made understandable, credible and interesting. The tools are used differently in papers and genres, and they are still influenced by the continuous competition among the daily papers in the market.

The purpose of this article is to explore, punctually demonstrate and explain the narrative norms that govern the writing of news. It defends the point of view that the contextual conditions of this journalistic activity is developing narrative modes and voices that fit into the ongoing fight for the attention of a treacherous public.

Open access
Social Representations Theory
A New Theory for Media Research

Abstract

This article argues that the theory of social representations can give valuable contributions to media research. It offers a new theory-based approach for studying how the media and citizens socially represent societal and political issues colouring our age, or some specific time period. Two fundamental communicative mechanisms – anchoring and objectification – are posited by the theory. These mechanisms, with a set of subcategories, are presented and it is shown how they can be used as conceptual analytical tools in empirical analysis. Concrete examples are given from a study on climate change and the media.

Open access
Naturalizing Social Class as a Moral Category on Swedish Mainstream Television

Abstract

This paper presents an analysis of how social class is constructed as a moral category on Swedish mainstream television. Practices of categorisation by the media is an important area of study since these practices are part of a process of co-construction of social categories that are offered to media users as cognitive tools and frames for navigating the social landscape. Based on a content analysis of television in Sweden, we show that the medium of television categorises people appearing on television along the social divisions of class and constructs class as a moral category, with a lower moral value assigned to the working class in comparison to the middle and upper class.

Open access
Vision and Intimacy
Gendered Communication Online

Abstract

One emerging form of communication discussed in the present article is the use of visual self-representation as a tool for symbolic interaction between young people on the Internet. Using examples of difference and similarity in young women’s and men’s visual self-representation, the article offers an interpretation of these practices, pointing towards both new visual conventions and references to pre-existing media representations, thus revealing a process of hypervisuality. In this process of transformation, the involvement of new technologies, such as webcam aesthetics and its form of intimacy and authenticity, produces specific visual conventions within the frame of pre-existing media imagery, when the self is presented in online communication.

Open access
Everyday Talk and the Conversational Patterns of the Soap Opera

Abstract

The soap opera has been explored from many different angles. This article examines the relationship between one of the general characteristics of the genre, the fact that there is far more talk than action, and the ways people actually talk in the soap. The article uses Bakhtin’s concept of speech genre as its source of inspiration and as an analytical tool that has the potential to be used in respect to many other genres that, in various ways, are constituted in talk.

Open access
Analysing Inference
And Ethos-Implicature in Particular

Abstract

In the article “Analyse inference - and ethos-implicature in particular” I discuss and define the notions of inference, presuppositions, premises and implicature as notions of what sort of information texts carry between the lines, i.e. beneath the surface level. Through this discussion I hope and think it may be possible to use the notions more precisely. By way of clarifying the concept I find it appropriate to distinguish between statistical, semantic, logical and pragmatic inference. I especially focus how inferred information contributes to the constitution of the author’s ethos. As an example, I analyse (and criticise) ethos-implicature in a commentary article in a Norwegian newspaper. Tools for the analysis are both from argumentation theory and stylistics.

Open access
Public Service Broadcasting as an Object for Cultural Policy in Norway and Sweden
A Policy Tool and an End in Itself

Abstract

The future of public service broadcasting (PSB), and its role for democracy and culture in an age of globalization and digitalization, is a disputed issue among communication scholars, journalists, the general public and politicians. The PSB institutions are dependent on political support for their survival, and they have to live up to cultural policy obligations. The focus of this analysis is on the rhetoric employed in the white papers on PSB and overall cultural policy, produced between 2005 and 2007 in Norway and Sweden. The analysis shows that both countries emphasize the need to secure an inclusive public sphere, a vivid democracy and a national culture. The rhetoric differs in the sense that the Norwegian focus is on PSB as a tool for achieving cultural policy goals, while the Swedish focus is more on why the idea of PSB is important in itself.

Open access
Transatlantic Perspectives on the U.S. 2004 Election
The Case of Norway

Abstract

The U.S. Presidential election of 2004 was an exciting reprise of the 2000 election and was closely watched by numerous observers across the world. The election held significant ramifications for world issues such as the war in Iraq and the war on terror. Norwegian media in particular followed the election with great interest. The strong social and familial bond between Norwegians and Americans was a foundation for an interest in the role that social issues such as abortion, gay marriage, and religion played in the campaign. This article was an exploratory case study based on data from three major Norwegian newspapers. The article used framing theory as a tool to examine the way in which these newspapers covered the 2004 U.S. Presidential election. A key focus was the importance and influence of culture in this framing process. Results are presented and implications for the role of framing theory in international contexts are discussed.

Open access