News as Discourse

News as Discourse

News as Discourse

News as Discourse

Excerpt

This book presents a new, interdisciplinary theory of news in the press. Against the background of developments in discourse analysis, it is argued that news should be studied primarily as a form of public discourse. Whereas in much mass communication research, the economic, social, or cultural dimensions of news and news media are addressed, the present study emphasizes the importance of an explicit structural analysis of news reports. Such an analysis should provide a qualitative alternative to traditional methods of content analysis. Also, attention is paid to processes of news production by journalists and news comprehension by readers, in terms of the social cognitions of news participants. In this way news structures can also be explicitly linked to social practices and ideologies of newsmaking and, indirectly, to the institutional and macrosociological contexts of the news media.

After a survey, in Chapter 1, of recent studies of news in different disciplines, both in the United States and Europe, Chapter 2 discusses the respective levels and dimensions of the structures of news reports in the press. Besides the usual linguistic, grammatical analysis of news language, an account is given of the important notions of topic and news schema, which represent the overall content and the conventional form of news reports. Finally, stylistic and rhetorical structures of news are analyzed. It is shown that these various structures of the news are systematically related to . . .

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