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Packaging Terrorism: Co-opting the News for Politics and Profit

Packaging Terrorism: Co-opting the News for Politics and Profit

Susan Moeller

ISBN: 978-1-444-30604-0 March 2009 Wiley-Blackwell 248 Pages

Description

Packaging Terrorism investigates how American media have identified and covered international terrorism and violence since September 11, 2001.
  • Compares US coverage with that of British and Arab media
  • Discusses the priorities, assumptions, political debates, deadline pressures and bottom-line considerations that will continue to influence coverage in the future
  • Suggests how terrorism could be better covered by the media going forwards
1. What is Terrorism?.

Introduction: A Very Simple Idea.

Are You Ready.

Words and Trojan Horses.

Political Correctness: can I use the word “terrorist”?.

Why Do News Standards Matter.

What is Terrorism?.

2. How is Terrorism Covered?.

The Politics of Coverage.

Making Terrorism the “Big Story”.

Tragedy and Politics: What We Hear, Why We Hear It.

The Voices of the Powerful.

When Caring About Victims Sells News.

Parsing the Difference Between Terrorism and War.

Co-opting the News / Co-opting the Public.

The Stories That Are Told.

Why Some Media Do a Better Job.

3. What Are the Images of Terror?.

The Politics of Images.

When Did Pictures Start to Matter?.

“It’s No Time to Be Squeamish”: The “Jumpers” at the World Trade Center.

The Public’s “Picture of the Year”: The Flag-Raising at Ground Zero.

“Is American Blood More Precious Than Iraqi Blood?”: Ali Abbas and Pfc. Jessica Lynch.

Terrorists Want an Audience, Too: Daniel Pearl, Nicholas Berg and Beyond.

“Cleaning Up” the Pictures: Madrid and Fallujah.

Losing Control of the Image: Official photos, Snapshots and Cameraphones.

What Do We Need to See? What Do We Need to Do?.

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4. Conclusion: Packaging Terrorism.

The End.

"The book is engaging and should be of interest to academics and general readers alike." (CHOICE, November 2009)

“The book is well-written, very informative, and engagingly convincing. Moeller develops a compelling argument on how politicians and media corporations package terrorism to attain political and economic ends. Moeller’s book can resonate with various kinds of readers. In fact, many readers might find the book to be one of the best analyses of the media’s coverage of terror.” (International Journal of Communication, 2009)

"The best book—of the many I’ve read—on the 'War on Terror'. Encompassing a huge volume of research, it incorporates internationally comparative perspectives, is informative and engagingly written, and develops its arguments and evidence subtly over the long haul, so that readers tending towards the skeptical may end up being convinced of the concluding arguments." (M/C Reviews, July 2009)

  • Investigates how American media have identified and covered international terrorism and violence since September 11, 2001
  • Compares US coverage with that of British and Arab media
  • Discusses the priorities, assumptions, political debates, deadline pressures and bottom-line considerations that will continue to influence coverage in the future
  • Suggests how terrorism could be better covered by the media going forwards