New book: Reporting Human Rights

UoP Journalism lecturer Dr Susana Sampaio-Dias has recently published her book Reporting Human Rights with Peter Lang, in their Global Crises and the Media Series. This book is based on her PhD research conducted at Cardiff University.

Cover Description

Reporting Human Rights provides a systematic examination of human rights news and reporting practices from inside the world of television news production.

From an interdisciplinary perspective, the book discusses the potential of journalism in contributing to human rights protection, awareness and debate, in ignoring, silencing or misrepresenting human rights issues around the world or, in extreme situations, in inciting hatred, genocide and crimes against humanity. It provides insight into how journalists translate human rights issues, revealing different reporting patterns and levels of detail in reporting, and suggesting different levels of engagement with human rights problems.

The book explains the most important factors that encourage or limit the coverage of human rights news. Grounded in a close examination of the news production processes and key moments where possible human rights stories are contemplated, decided or eventually ignored, the book opens up new insights into the complexities and constraints of human rights reporting today.

Advance Praise

“With its depth and detail this book comprehensively and impressively covers the relationship be- tween contemporary news journalism and how the reporting of human rights is determined and undertaken. Reporting Human Rights uses both a theoretical and case study approach to engage with in a sophisticated and fluent way the complexity of the relationship between modern journalism and human rights. All in all a very good book indeed.”

— Jackie Harrison, University of Sheffield

“Should journalism report aggressively on human rights even when budgets are tight? With this innovative blend of news ethics and sociology Susana Sampaio-Dias offers a unique and valuable glimpse into the constraints and concerns of journalists reporting on human rights in a time of newsroom austerity.”

— Chris Paterson, University of Leeds

“Reporting Human Rights is a ground-breaking contribution which sheds light on how journalists report human rights. The book compellingly dramatizes a key tension in contemporary journalistic practice: On the one hand, journalists feel a moral responsibility to report with depth and compassion on human rights issues. On the other hand, institutional, economic and practical constraints and routines prevent them from giving the issue the attention it deserves, precluding the global approach it requires. With rich insights into how and why journalists work the way they do, this book is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in the role of media in the public sphere.”

— Karin Wahl-Jorgensen, Cardiff University

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