The Routledge Companion to Political Journalism  book cover
1st Edition

The Routledge Companion to Political Journalism

ISBN 9780367248222
Published October 20, 2021 by Routledge
470 Pages 27 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This international edited collection brings together the latest research in political journalism, examining the ideological, commercial and technological forces that are transforming the field and its evolving relationship with news audiences.

Comprising 40 original chapters written by scholars from around the world, The Routledge Companion to Political Journalism offers fundamental insights from the disciplines of political science, media, communications  and journalism. Drawing on interviews, discourse analysis and quantitative statistical methods, the volume is divided into six parts, each focusing on a major theme in the contemporary study of political journalism. Topics covered include far-right media, populism movements and the media, local political journalism practices, public engagement and audience participation in political journalism, agenda setting, and advocacy and activism in journalism. Chapters draw on case studies from the United Kingdom, Hungary, Russia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Italy, Brazil, the United States, Greece and Spain.

The Routledge Companion to Political Journalism is a valuable resource for students and scholars of media studies, journalism studies, political communication and political science.

Table of Contents


List of tables and figures

List of contributors

Introduction: the new terrain of mediated politics

James Morrison, Jen Birks and Mike Berry


From ‘truth’ to ‘post-truth’ eras? The history of political journalism

1 The origins and development of political journalism in Britain

Brian Cathcart

2 Partial news: election editorializing in inter-war Britain

Dominic Wring and David Deacon

3 Reinventing political reporting: Outsides, disruptors and innovators

Erik Neveu

4 Political news and the ‘celebrity frame’

John Corner

5 Evolving journalism norms: Objective, interpretive and fact-checking journalism

Jen Birks


Political journalism and media systems: Political economy and journalistic professionalism

6 The Scottish independence referendum, political journalism and the news media landscape

Marina Dekavalla

7 Local political journalism: Systematic pressures on the normative functions of local news

Julie Firmstone and Rebecca Whittington

8 Political journalism in a hybrid media landscape: A Scandinavian policy perspective

Sigurd Allern

9 Hungary’s clientelistic media system

Péter Bajomi-Lázár

10 Political journalism in the Russian media system: Journalistic professionalization in the context of digital media

Elena Vartanova

11 Internet-led political journalism: Challenging hybrid regime resilience in Malaysia

Niki Cheong

12 Journalism in Myanmar: Freedom, Facebook and fake news

Tina Burrett


Pluralism, partisanship and populism in political journalism

13 The new populisms: A key dynamic of mediated populisms

Michael Higgins

14 The Renewed visibility of populism: are social media the culprit?

Delia Dumitrica

15 Strategies of alternative right-wing media: The case of Breitbart News

Jason Roberts and Karin Wahl-Jorgensen

16 Putin, partisanship and the press: Comparing Russian media reporting of Alexander Litvinenko and Sergei Skripal

Tina Burrett

17 Political journalism by other means: An African perspective

Herman Wasserman

18 What kind of Italy? The cultural battle waged by a European populist leader against Brussels

Paul Rowinski

19 Populist candidates in the age of social media: Media portrayals of Jair Bolsonaro’s presidential bid in Brazil

Heloisa Sturm Wilkerson


Public engagement in political journalism: Audience reception, interaction and participation

20 ‘How can you stand there and say you didn’t overspend and end up bankrupting this country?’ Power, propaganda and public understanding of the economy

Mike Berry

21 The resiliency of partisan selective exposure

Jacob L. Nelson

22 Digital media and the proliferation of public opinion cues online: Biases and vulnerabilities in the new attention economy

Andrew R.N. Ross,  Andrew Chadwick, and Cristian Vaccari

23 Gate-watching and news curation

Axel Bruns

24 Walking the line: Political journalism and social media publicsMarcel Broersma

24 ‘Viral journalism’, is it a thing? Adapting quality reporting to shifting social media algorithms and wavering audiences

Anastasia Denisova

26 Reporting on white supremacy: challenges of amplification, legitimization and mainstreaming for political journalism

Tina Askanius and Sophie Bjork-James


Political agenda-setting, media effects and voting behaviour

27 Protecting the citizen: Political journalists as gatekeepers in the digital age

Darren G. Lilleker and Shelley Thompson

28 Media effects on perceptions of societal problems: Belief formation in fragmented media environments

Adam Shehata

29 Agenda-setting theory in a networked world

Jason A. Martin

30 Influencing the public agenda in the social media era: Questioning the role of mainstream political journalism from the digital landscape

Andreu Casero-Ripolles

31 The delegitimizing potential of Internet memes in political communication: A Case study of the 2020 US election

Andrew S. Ross

32 Telling tales: Gender and political journalism

Emily Harmer

33 The Role of audiences in television leaders’ debates and political journalism

Richard Danbury


Political controversies: single issue politics, grassroots advocacy and campaigning in the news

34 Journalistic work in cultures of protest: A transnational review

Daniel H. Mutibwa

35 Who’s punching who? Examining advocacy reporting and commercial restraints in TV satire programming

Allaina Kilby

36 Pluralist public sphere or elitist closed circle? Elite-driven agendas and contributor ‘chemistry’ as determinants of pundit choice on a flagship BBC politics

James Morrison

37 The importance of space in photojournalists’ accounts of the anti-austerity protests in Greece

Anastasia Veneti, Paul Reilly, and Darren G. Lilleker

38 Scotland and period poverty: A case study of activists’ media and political agenda-setting

Fiona McKay

39 Continental drift: Historical perspectives on the framing of ‘Europe’ in the British press

Simon Gwyn Roberts

40 8M and the Huelga General Feminista, 2019-2020: feminist engagement with state, capital and Spain’s ‘clase política’

Stuart Price

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James Morrison is reader in journalism at Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen. A former national newspaper journalist, his research interests focus on stigmatization and othering in media and political discourse. He is the author of the monographs Familiar Strangers, Juvenile Panic and the British Press, Scroungers: Moral Panics and Media Myths and The Left Behind.

Jen Birks is associate professor of media at the University of Nottingham, and co-convener of the Political Studies Association Media and Politics Group. Her research focuses on the role of publics and civil society in political media and communication. Her most recent monograph is Fact-checking Journalism and Political Argumentation.

Mike Berry is senior lecturer in the Department of Journalism, Media and Culture at Cardiff University. His books include The Media, the Public and the Great Financial Crisis and (with Greg Philo) Bad News from Israel. His research primarily focuses on how media impact public knowledge and understanding of social, political and economic issues.