Graphic death in the news media : present or absent?

Hanusch, Folker (2008) Graphic death in the news media : present or absent? Mortality, 13(4), pp. 301-317.

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The debate over the absence or presence of death in public discourse has dominated death studies for some time. While the argument that death had been removed from public discourse and only existed in the private realm dominated at first, in recent years scholars have come to accept that death has moved back into public discourse. An important aspect has been the role played by the mass media. However, there has been little empirical research as to what level of death is actually visible, for example in terms of photographs. To this end, this paper examines how two German and two Australian newspapers cover death in terms of graphic photographs. By examining the number and types of photographs published during a 2-month timeframe, as well as through in-depth interviews with journalists, this paper argues that visible death is still largely absent from public discourse. Importantly, there exist differences as to what level of graphic death is acceptable between individual newspapers, as well as countries, supporting the argument that the absence/presence of death dichotomy needs to be viewed in a much more complex light.

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7 citations in Scopus
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ID Code: 68289
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Death and media, graphic death, journalism and death, dead body, death in public discourse
DOI: 10.1080/13576270802383840
ISSN: 1469-9885 (online) 1357-6275 (print)
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300) > Journalism Studies (190301)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > Schools > Journalism, Media & Communication
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2008 Taylor & Francis
Copyright Statement: author can archive pre-print (ie pre-refereeing)
Deposited On: 12 Mar 2014 04:08
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2014 23:38

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