UNH Professor Analyzes Media Coverage of Iraq

By Erika Mantz
UNH News Bureau

February 24, 2003

DURHAM, N.H. A media analyst and professor of communication at the University of New Hampshire will speak about the power of the news media to shape public perceptions of Iraq on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2003, at 3:30 p.m. in room 4 of Horton Hall. The presentation is open to the campus community and public.

Using video clips and overhead transparencies of news stories, Joshua Meyrowitz will assess the quality of news reporting on Saddam Hussein and Iraq over the last 12 years in his lecture "Where Is the Line Between War News and War Propaganda?" Showing excerpts from documentaries shot in Iraq by independent filmmakers and summarizing recently declassified U.S. government documents, Meyrowitz also will evaluate how well the mainstream news media have covered the impact of the Gulf War and U.S.-led sanctions on the Iraqi people.

"Most Americans must rely on the news to inform them about nonlocal places, people, and events," Meyrowitz says. "And in democracies such as ours, most citizens tend to believe the news media. This grants the news media an awesome responsibility to report accurately and fully." Meyrowitz will describe both good and bad reporting, as well as promising and troubling trends in U.S. journalism.

Meyrowitz has been recognized as "Outstanding Scholar-Teacher" in the College of Liberal Arts at UNH. He is the author of "No Sense of Place," an award-winning book on the impact of electronic media on society.

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