Ferguson, Objectivity, and Journalism's Post-Racial Reckoning

Posted on: Thursday, May 3, 2018 - 3:07pm

Carolyn Nielsen to Speak About 'Ferguson, Objectivity, and Journalism's Post-Racial Reckoning'

Carolyn Nielsen, Associate Professor of Journalism at Western Washington University, will discuss her research and explore questions sparked by her experiences as a newspaper journalist covering justice issues on Wednesday, May 16, 2018 at 4:00 p.m. at Western Libraries Special Collections (Wilson Library 6th Floor).

This event is free and open to the public.

During her talk entitled, "Ferguson, Objectivity, and Journalism's Post-Racial Reckoning," Nielsen will discuss how the field of journalism is evolving with a focus on news coverage of racial issues. Beginning with the nomination of Barack Obama as a presidential candidate and the questions of post-racialism his candidacy elicited, through the Department of Justice report detailing rampant racism in the Ferguson Police Department, Nielsen's work traces narratives of racial conflict as presented in traditional news coverage and coverage from emerging paradigms such as BuzzFeed.

Nielsen’s research shows how "online news," previously understood primarily in terms of a novel delivery method, is now embracing a different set of values than traditional news, and how traditional news is now migrating in that direction. Her doctoral dissertation, “Moment or Movement: U.S. News Coverage of Racial Issues in a Digital Era,” was awarded the University of Washington Department of Communications Faculty Award for Outstanding Dissertation of 2017. Her research considers the intersection of technology, racial news narratives, and longtime journalism norms, and this is the foundation for her forthcoming book, which will be published next year by the University of Missouri Press.

This special talk is offered as part of the Western Libraries Reading Series, which is dedicated to showcasing the scholarly and creative work of faculty and staff who are engaged in research, writing, and teaching at Western. For more information about this event, please contact Elizabeth Stephan at (360) 650-2061 or Elizabeth.Stephan@wwu.edu.

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