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The Language of Journalism


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The variety of media platforms available makes it difficult for would-be journalists to understand the requirements of each medium. This book is an accessible, clearly structured guide to different language conventions. It clearly explains the different styles and issues involved with each platform, covering theory as well as practice.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 1.Introduction: Why should we study the language of journalism? 2.Broadcast Journalism 3.Magazine Journalism 4.Newspaper Journalism 5.Sports Journalism 6.Online and Citizen Journalism Bibliography Index

About the Author

Michael Higgins is Director of the Journalism and Creative Writing programme at the University of Strathclyde, UK. He has written articles for Discourse Society and Journalism: Theory, Practice Criticism, and is author of the book Media and Their Publics (Open University Press, 2008). He is also co-editor of the Cambridge Companion to Modern British Culture (2010). Angela Smith is Senior Lecturer at the University of Sunderland, UK. She has written numerous articles and book chapters on media discourses, gender, the portrayal of immigrants, and the representation of politicians. She is also a contributor to the Encyclopaedia of Journalism (Sage, 2009).


The Language of Journalism's impressive theoretical analysis will satisfy the most demanding scholar, while its clarity of purpose and expression will also enlighten those new to the subject. Higgins and Smith's critical analysis is clearly linked to appropriate and interesting empirical examples; extraordinarily useful for scholars, teachers and students. The book is essential reading for any serious student of the power of language and its use within all aspects of journalism. -- Mick Temple, Professor of Journalism & Politics, Staffordshire University, UK, Co-editor, Journalism Education; Co-convener, Media & Politics Group, PSA
This book is a pleasure to read. Its pages brim with ideas that will challenge students and professors alike. The authors are to be commended for their critical appraisal of the language of journalism. Readers are brought to the core of understanding journalism with a focus on the place of language in how stories are built and understood. Key concepts and the techniques of language and discourse analysis are outlined before the authors dissect the role of language in broadcast, print and online journalism. They make a very strong case for why language is central to unraveling the conundrum of what we understand journalism to be today. -- Kevin Rafter, Senior Lecturer in Political Communication & Associate Dean for Research, Dublin City University, Ireland
Through rich analysis of examples from contemporary journalism, this book does an excellent job of introducing readers to analysis of journalistic language. The authors achieve the difficult task of introducing readers to discourse analysis while also remaining firmly focused on the value of that in understanding our media, from the way live news achieves its appeal to how readers of consumer magazines are invited to make sense of themselves. Above all, the book gives readers a wide range of tools to think in greater depth about the way journalism's textual practice constructs versions of our world. -- Donald Matheson, Senior Lecturer, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Canterbury, NZ
Angela Smith and Dr. Michael Higgins explore the media's use of language to purposely and inadvertently maintain the societal status quo. The chapters are clearly organized with plenty of subheadings throughout and a labeled conclusion, which, again, could be helpful for students. It would be a good reading for use in an introductory media and society course...It, thus, provides a useful contribution to our academic field. -- Alyssa Appelman, Pennsylvania State University * Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly *

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