Makers of the Media Mind: Journalism Educators and Their Ideas

Makers of the Media Mind: Journalism Educators and Their Ideas

Makers of the Media Mind: Journalism Educators and Their Ideas

Makers of the Media Mind: Journalism Educators and Their Ideas

Synopsis

Makers of the Media Mind is a collection of analytical essays focusing on the most important and original ideas contributed to the field of mass communication by journalism educators. Divided into six sections representing the most prominent areas of specialization in the field, this text serves two significant purposes: first, it acquaints readers with the lives of preeminent journalism educators; second, it provides concise discussions and evaluations of the most compelling ideas those educators have to offer. The editor of, and contributors to, this text contend that ideas cannot be appreciated fully without an understanding of the creators of those same ideas. They hope that this volume's coverage of "creators" as well as concepts will demonstrate that journalism education has played a critical role in the making of the "media mind."

Excerpt

Is there any task more likely to meet with disagreement than making a list of the "10 greatest" of anything? In writing this book, making a decision about which journalism educators to include and which to leave out was the most difficult part.

We began by deciding to make this book a collection of analytical essays focusing primarily on the ideas contributed to the field of mass communication, rather than a biographical encyclopedia including every notable educator, for surely the volume would be immensely heavy if every prominent person in the field were included. Thus, our first criterion for selection was the importance and originality of the contribution an individual has made to the intellectual vitality of the field.

Second, because we envisioned this book itself as a contribution to the knowledge of journalism education, we made a decision in the beginning that to be included an individual must have served as a journalism teacher at the university level. The reader thus will not find biographies of a number of individuals who wrote important works on journalism but never graced a classroom with their eloquence.

Then, we divided the field into the most prominent areas of specialized knowledge (practical skills, history, philosophy, law, theory, and methodology) and arbitrarily decided that from five to seven individuals should be included in each area.

We also accepted the fact from the beginning that probably no one else would agree with us fully in the selection of the 38 most important educators the field of journalism has possessed during the last 80 years or so. Each reader will, we presume, believe that several of his or her choices should have been included or that some individuals we have included should have been omitted. We will not be offended by the disagreement but instead are resigned to it.

The most evident omission is female educators. To justify our oversight (except for Clarice Olien), we point to the fact that for most of its history males dominated journalism education. It was not until the last 20 or so years that women became numerous. Although they now make up a growing segment of the field, their entry into it has been recent, and time has not allowed their con-

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