Journalism as Resource: Histories of Journalistic Knowledge Practices
Journalism is commonly defined as "a way to tell acceptable stories about society" (A. Tucher). Thinking of journalism as "a way" to do something implies a set of tools and practices that constitute a method. Throughout its history, journalism has been seen and used as a resource—a set of tools and practices—that pertain to a range of areas required for writing and publishing about the everyday, including network-building, writing strategies, technologies of observation, construction of personae, and more. This tool kit formed the basis for journalistic work and the knowledge that it became noted for. Moreover, journalists consciously engaged in self-reflection about what it meant to be a journalist and actively honed a set of skills and practices that could be used to define the field and to instruct new recruits to the profession. This lecture outlines how a history of journalism as resource can be written by historicizing journalistic knowledge practices and by tracing exemplary cases of journalistic practices (and its reflection) throughout the Central European and North American "newspaper age," spanning from the invention of the mass printing press to the emergence and dominance of media journalism in the 1970s. The lecture highlights how the precariousness of journalism as a struggling profession was negotiated over the contested status of journalistic knowledge practices.
Please see further information about the lecture series here.