ERIC Number: ED217417
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-May
Reference Count: 0
French-Language Newspapers in the Arab World: An Elite Press?
Cooper, Anne Messerly
Algeria and Tunisia, where newspapers in both French and Arabic have large circulations, were used as case studies to test ideas about elite journalism. It was hypothesized that if French language newspapers appealed to the intelligentsia and opinion leaders, then their content should be serious and responsible; and that, by contrast, the Arabic press should have popular, nationalistic content. Following a content analysis of more than 2,000 stories appearing in 2 Tunisian newspapers (1 French and 1 Arabic) and 2 Algerian newspapers (1 French and 1 Arabic), rankings of content type were drawn up for all 4 publications. Content types considered were (1) foreign activities of the home country, (2) events in the home country involving foreign participants, (3) news of countries other than the home country, and (4) other international news. The results indicated that none of the four newspapers was dominated by stories with mass-appeal topics such as sports, crime, or entertainment. On the contrary, all four emphasized "elite" topics such as international and domestic politics and economics. Further analysis indicated that theme rankings within each country correlated strongly and significantly, while correlations within language correlated weakly. The findings call into question prevalent thinking about elite newspapers. (FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Algeria; Elitism; International News; Tunisia
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (32nd, Boston, MA, May 2-5, 1982). Best copy available.