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Constructing (Il)Legitimate Democracy: Populism and Power Concentration in Newspaper Discourse on Venezuela
Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap. (Medier och journalistik)ORCID-id: 0000-0001-9515-4691
2014 (engelsk)Inngår i: tripleC (cognition, communication, co-operation): Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society / Unified Theory of Information Research Group, ISSN 1726-670X, Vol. 12, nr 2, s. 802-821Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert) Published
Abstract [en]

Despite scholarly consensus about the importance of the media for democracy, scant attention has been paid to what democracy means to journalistic discourse and how discourses on democracy are interrelated with legitimacy. The aim of this paper is to explore how (il)legitimate democracy is constructed in newspaper discourse. By using critical discourse analysis (CDA), this paper examines foreign news items about Venezuela, a country that under the presidency of Hugo Chávez has challenged the dominant global political and economic orders. The analysis section focuses on two discourses about the Venezuelan government: the constructions of populism  and power concentration, which serve to mark deviance from what is perceived as a legitimate democracy. This paper argues that a liberal perception of democracy constitutes a central framework for the construction of (il)legitimate democracy, which is revealed not least by news discourse’s focus on what is morally unacceptable political conduct according to liberal democratic norms. In this respect, the media discourse serves to denounce potential abuses of governmental power but fail to recognize democracy in the context of a social struggle against the effects of neoliberalism and capitalism. In this case, the news media is hegemonic in the Gramscian sense, because it provides a framework of democracy that remains within the dominant economic and political structures.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
2014. Vol. 12, nr 2, s. 802-821
Emneord [en]
Democracy; Media; Journalism; Discourse; Ideology; Legitimacy; Liberalism; Foreign News, Venezuela, Hugo Chávez
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
Medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-39610OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-39610DiVA, id: diva2:770976
Tilgjengelig fra: 2014-12-11 Laget: 2014-12-11 Sist oppdatert: 2017-10-18bibliografisk kontrollert
Inngår i avhandling
1. Through a post-political gaze: on the ideological loading of democracy in the coverage of Chávez's Venezuela
Åpne denne publikasjonen i ny fane eller vindu >>Through a post-political gaze: on the ideological loading of democracy in the coverage of Chávez's Venezuela
2015 (engelsk)Doktoravhandling, med artikler (Annet vitenskapelig)
Abstract [en]

Rooted in ideology critique, this dissertation studies the construction of democracy in the coverage of Venezuela during the era of President Hugo Chávez. The aim of this endeavor is twofold. First, the dissertation aims to understand the relationship between ideology and the construction of democracy in journalism on foreign political phenomena. Second, it attempts to explore the ways in which the relationship between ideology and democracy in journalism serves to legitimize or delegitimize the struggle for social justice in nations in the global South vis-à-vis the political and economic fundamentals of global capitalism.

The dissertation comprises three articles that study the construction of democracy in depictions of the Venezuelan political system and its key political actors. Article I studies the construction of (il)legitimate democracy in relation to the Venezuelan government, Article II explores the construction of difference between Chávez’s supporters and his opponents, and Article III studies the coverage of the coup d’état against Chávez in 2002. All three articles are methodologically rooted in critical discourse analysis and rely on materials from a sample of three elite newspapers: Dagens Nyheter (Sweden), El País (Uruguay), and the New York Times (US).

Across the studies, there are four macro-strategies that in different ways serve to ideologically load the notion of democracy. Three of these strategies – the constructs of populism, of power concentration and of difference – serve to define political deviance and to (de)legitimize political actors in relation to democracy. The fourth macro-strategy, relativization, serves to justify actions that contradict established democratic principles but serve greater politico-ideological goals.

(De)legitimation in relation to democracy corresponds with the closeness of a group of actors to the dominant political practices and values within global capitalism. Journalistic reporting thus follows a post-political gaze; it is generally in accordance with the political consensus that characterizes the post-Cold War era. Through this gaze, any challenge to the political tenets of global capitalism fails on democratic grounds.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
Örebro: Örebro university, 2015. s. 124
Serie
Örebro Studies in Media and Communication, ISSN 1651-4785 ; 20
Emneord
Ideology, Democracy, Hegemony, Journalism, International journalism, Post-politics, Critical discourse analysis, Media studies, Venezuela
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
Medie- och kommunikationsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-44127 (URN)978-91-7529-083-6 (ISBN)
Disputas
2015-06-12, Prismahuset, Hörsal 1, Örebro universitet, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 13:15 (engelsk)
Opponent
Veileder
Tilgjengelig fra: 2015-04-08 Laget: 2015-04-08 Sist oppdatert: 2017-10-17bibliografisk kontrollert

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