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Att förstå mediekritik: Begreppsliga, empiriska och teoretiska studier av svensk mediekritik 1998-2013
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Informatics and Media, Media and Communication Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7362-1092
2015 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
Understanding Media Criticism : Conceptual, empirical and theoretical studies of media criticism in Sweden, 1998-2013 (English)
Abstract [en]

Media criticism is studied as a concept, as critical expression and as a force for social change. The concept of media criticism is developed in relation to different forms of critical practice, theory about criticism and critique and as a part of theories about media accountability. Media criticism as a force of social change is approached by exploring concepts for the analysis of social and cultural forms of media criticism.

Four kinds of media texts published in Sweden between 1998 and 2013 were analysed to investigate critical expression: television columns, reflective books on journalism written by journalists, debate articles and letters to the editor. They were studied in terms of how they address actors, content and forms of critique and responsiveness. The methodology used was reflexive interpretation mainly driven by insight, but also with an emancipative intention. Qualitative text analysis was the major method used, combined with quantitative content analysis.

The concept of media criticism is developed on three levels as normative and institutional, focused on established norms and values, norm shaping and formative, focused on establishing new norms and values and openness and practice, making it possible for many people to contribute to critique. Media criticism can further be specified in three dimensions comprising its intentions, the object of critique and the process of critique. Taken together they establish different forms of criticality in which a communicative intention is seen as essential. 

The dissertation shows that media criticism should be given a more independent role in relation to the media accountability frame. Critical cultures and practices should be analysed in their relations to accountability cultures and practices. The concepts of institution, formative and formation were used for analysing the social and cultural forms of media criticism, where institutions are understood as the stable forms of media criticism, formatives as the changeable forms and formations as the combination of the two. Criticism and critical practice potentially have an important role to play for change in the media, journalism and society by addressing issues in an open and reflexive way. The approach to media criticism developed in the dissertation is termed critical institutionalism and aims to bridge the gap between critical social science, the sociology of critique and institutional analysis as applied in media studies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2015. , 327 p.
Uppsala Studies in Media and Communication, ISSN 1651-4777 ; 8
Keyword [en]
journalism, media, critique, criticism, media criticism, media accountability, critical social science, sociology of critique, critical theory, institutional theory, media ethics
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Media and Communication Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-237866ISBN: 978-91-554-9127-7OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-237866DiVA: diva2:769785
Public defence
2015-02-06, Hörsal 2, Ekonomikum, Kyrkogårsgatan 10, Uppsala, 10:15 (Swedish)
Available from: 2015-01-15 Created: 2014-12-06 Last updated: 2016-01-07Bibliographically approved

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