Embedded journalism: constructing romanticized images of China by US journalists in the 1970s

Celine SONG*, Chin Chuan Lee

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This case study examines the memoirs of American correspondents who were "embedded" within official delegations during the course of the US-China rapprochement in the early and mid-1970s. We seek to analyze how short-term visiting journalists arrived at their romanticized portrayals of Maoist China - when it was going through the chaos of the Cultural Revolution - and how the embedding journalistic practice served to facilitate foreign policy ventures orchestrated by both governments. We conclude that this romantic wave of media portrayal was entwined with journalistic preconceptions and a high level of dependency upon local fixers. Furthermore, we use discourse analysis to identify three "ideological packages" in their interpretation of the "new China" and its Cultural Revolution: material progress through self-reliance; a sense of purpose and morality; and equality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-190
Number of pages17
JournalChinese Journal of Communication
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2014

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Communication

User-Defined Keywords

  • embedded journalism
  • foreign correspondence
  • frame
  • ideological packages
  • journalistic preconception

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