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Title: Change or continuity : the culture and practices of journalism in Mexico (2000-2007)
Author: Marquez Ramirez, Mireya
ISNI:       0000 0004 2736 3098
Awarding Body: Goldsmiths College (University of London)
Current Institution: Goldsmiths College (University of London)
Date of Award: 2012
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This project examines four dimensions of journalism in Mexico: historical development, journalists’ professional mindsets, conditions of freedom and autonomy, as well as sourcing patterns, narratives and reporting practices. By looking at individual, organisational, political, economic, and historical factors, we attempt to identify patterns of change and continuity—as well as areas of ambiguity—embedded in the culture of journalism after political democratisation. Previous accounts of media transformation in the country have noted that an American style of journalism has slowly gained a foothold as a result of economic liberalisation, and has allegedly replaced the passive, authoritarian traits that characterised press-state relations during the 20th century. We interrogate such narratives by arguing that rather than a progressive media transition, a hybridisation of journalism traditions has occurred, wherein the liberal discourse of professionalism has blended with continuing authoritarian practices, while commercial interests of the media have all re-accommodated and adapted to a mutating political environment. We first trace the development of journalism and the various factors that have shaped it. In the individual and organisational aspects of journalistic culture, we examine the way Mexican journalists notionally disengage from their authoritarian past and pay lip service to liberal press values and roles. Likewise, we look at the way they assimilate organisational demands, daily pressures, and newsroom hierarchy. In the analysis of conditions of autonomy, we survey the state of freedom of speech and censorship under the two consecutive PAN governments, as well as the role of political and private advertisers as agents of pressure. Moreover, the thesis analyses the way in which the collection and dissemination of political messages, sourcing patterns and the resulting narrative reflect a continuity of a passive style of journalism. Finally, we evaluate the interplay of these dimensions of Mexican journalistic culture in relation to a specific political conflict, notably the presidential elections of 2006. The study, ultimately, aims to highlight the flaws and limitations of liberal accounts of media transformation in the context of a transitional democracy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Journalism