How could the journalistic representation of ethnic minorities be improved? Sheng Zou of Stanford University proposes a dialogical model representation, to evoke mutual understanding across differences.
The author states that a a shift from “journalism of information” to “journalism of conversation” and from the “ethics of inarticulacy” to ethics of care is needed. The article employs Charles Taylor’s and Mikhail Bakhtin’s views on dialogue and describes two dialogical approaches:
- the evaluative articulation of moral values and
- the polyphonic incorporation of different voices.
The former suggests that journalists should employ a nuanced use of language to situate minorities’ viewpoints in a common “horizon of significance”, resonating with other members in the larger society. The latter challenges the idea objectivity in narration and calls for manifold voices from ordinary people as actors in journalistic stories.
Finally, the author examines two online articles and their treatment of different actors in the stories in terms of language use, narrative structure and tactics.
The article “From Inarticulacy to Care” was published in Journalism Practice and is available online (free abstract).
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