Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets

By Sharon Hartin Iorio | Go to book overview

3
The Changing
News Paradigm:

From Objectivity to Interpretive Sufficiency
Clifford G. Christians
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The contemporary version of the press traces its beginning to the 1890s. The media developed into an industrial structure, and the first forays into journalism education appeared. The press took shape as a complex and diversified social institution, with journalists an expert class pursuing specialized tasks. The North American press began understanding itself during this decade not as a political forum or socializing force, but as a corporate economic structure marketing a commodity for consumers. Structural patterns of authority and accountability were utilitarian in form, and utilitarianism characterized the press's organizational culture, which in turn was rooted in industrial production and market distribution. The industrialization and commercialization of the media displaced an earlier news culture that had used partisan advantage as its main standard. With the industrialization of the press, media occupations, especially journalism, began to redefine themselves as middle-class professions and sought a place within the rising university system.

A university education for journalists was first seriously attempted late in the 19th century. By 1910 when Flexner had written his monumental Report to the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching on professional training in a university context, journalism education had adopted a functional

-41-

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Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents vii
  • Foreword ix
  • References xii
  • Preface xiii
  • About the Contributors xvii
  • Part I 1
  • 1 - Qualitative Method Journalism 3
  • References *
  • 2 - The Chicago School Precedent 21
  • Endnotes *
  • References *
  • 3 - From Objectivity to Interpretive Sufficiency 41
  • References *
  • Part II 57
  • 4 - The Case of the Akron Beacon Journal 59
  • References *
  • 5 - Focus Groups Newsroom Style 75
  • References *
  • 6 - Giving Voice to the Voiceless 93
  • References *
  • Appendix 6.1 - Deed of Gift to the Public Domain *
  • 7 - Focused Interviews 109
  • Endnotes *
  • References *
  • 8 - Ethnographic Journalism 127
  • References *
  • 9 - Inventing Civic Mapping 145
  • Endnotes *
  • References *
  • 10 - Textual Analysis in Journalism 163
  • Endnotes *
  • References 174
  • 11 - The Imperative of Pairing Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches in Communication Research 175
  • Endnotes *
  • References *
  • 12 - Newsrooms and Community 193
  • References *
  • Endnotes *
  • Glossary 213
  • References 224
  • Author Index 227
  • Subject Index 233
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