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[Commlist] Call for book chapters: Understanding health crises and their in-print on journalism and media discourses in Africa
Mon Jul 27 22:48:39 GMT 2020
BOOK TITLE: *UNDERSTANDING HEALTH CRISES AND THEIR IN-PRINT ON
JOURNALISM AND MEDIA DISCOURSES IN AFRICA *
When the COVID-19 broke out in the Chinese city of Wuhan at the close of
2019, no one imagined its rapid global spread and devastating impact –
especially on the African media ecology. By the end of June, there were
over 10 million confirmed global cases and over 500,000 confirmed deaths
in 215 countries (WHO Situation Report July 2020). Declared a Public
Health Emergency of International Concern by the World Health
Organisation on 30 January 2020, countries around the world embarked on
public health measures to curb the spread. Lock-downs of different
proportions and motives have been instituted in most countries and with
Media and public (health and crisis) communication has been at the core
of the fight against COVID-19 underscoring its role in providing quick,
accurate and preventive information to combat fear, re-store calm and
order and save lives by causing adherence to recommended behaviour
change in critical times of crisis. But the implication goes far beyond
the need for timely information. Reporters without Border (Tracker 19)
and UNESCO recently highlighted the new dangers journalists and media
face during COVID-19 including: misinformation, draconian
bills/legislation, harassment/intimidation, arrests and jail, withheld
advertising, murder of journalists, among others.
While, Media discourses around health crises may reflect a global scope,
such discourses in Africa constitute unique features, struggles,
histories and challenges and ultimately strategies specific to the
continent and also country specific. This collection of empirical
research explores not just the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic but
also takes a broad approach to understanding discourses around health
and crisis communication on the continent of Africa. The interest is to
harness reflected continental media discourses surrounding political,
social, economic, technological, religious, gendered and cultural and
systemic developments around health crises including but not limited to
HIV/AIDS communication, Malaria, Ebola virus pandemic, COVID-19.
Within this context, this book aims to offer novel insights into media
discourses around health and crisis communication on the African
continent through rigorous and critical empirical and theoretical
engagement. The chapters’ expected focus is on 4 interrelated themes: a)
Impact on Journalism Professional Practice, b) Media content/discourse,
c) Audience studies and d) Diasporic discourses, pandemic and health
*Themes include but are not limited to: *
Economic impact of pandemics on media houses and financial
sustainability. How do health crises affect the operations and routines
of journalists? What economic discourses have arisen during the pandemic
and how are media houses and journalists adapting?
Political impact. In what ways have health crises impacted the media
politically. i.e. Censorship, restrictions, government dominance of news
flows, bans, jail, arrests, violence against journalists, bills enacted
against ‘fake news’, government subsidies (for example during Covid-10, etc?
Technology and the role of Social Media during health crises. How/to
what extent does technology benefit journalistic work? Public
communication/audiences? Citizen journalism in times of pandemics? What
are the prospects and challenges associated with technology? Social
media usage in seeking and sharing information during health crises.
Remote journalism what are the advantages and challenges associated with
quarantine (for example during the COVID-19 ‘lock-down’) in terms of
accessing sources and performing watchdog or investigative journalism?
News coverage with a focus on News Content and discourse analysis,
including rhetorical analysis. What has been the focus, news frames,
agendas and/or discourses in the media during health crises?
Cross-cutting issues such as gender, social justice, ethics, fake news,
sources, community media, international flows, etc are also of interest.
Key cross cutting issues may intersect public communication, stigma,
prejudice, discrimination and inequalities, cultural and health beliefs
about diseases/viruses. As well as preventative strategies by
communities or governments, behaviour change communication, crisis and
risk communication, perceived risk and severity and its impact on
pandemic/disease prevention, misinformation, disinformation and
behaviour change among others.
Audience studies – includes audience perspectives around COVID-19 and
other pandemics, audience news consumption and production, sources,
public sphere discourses, public opinion on government policies during
and after pandemics and affected groups’ experiences. This may also
include perspectives from health specialists like doctors, nurses and so on.
Diasporic media discourses during COVID-19. Representations in
mainstream media of diasporic groups, communities. Discourses on
immigration, ‘the Other’, symbolic annihilation, transnational flows,
social media and media consumption and production patterns as critical
pandemics tend to have global impacts and implication.
Comparative studies along with other methodologically innovative
approaches that critically engage a wide range of (media, health
communication and crisis communication) theories are particularly welcome.
*Important dates *
Abstract submission: September 15.
Notification of acceptance: September 30
Article submission deadline: January 15
Double Peer-reviewed returned to authors – February 30
Publishing: July 2021
*Instructions for abstract submission: *
*Abstract *300 words
*Author Bio *200 words
Page 1 should clearly indicate: Title, Author(s) names and Affiliation.
(Submissions in Pdf format). Submitted on 15 September 2020.
Carol A. Dralega (PhD) is an Associate Professor at the Department of
Journalism, Media and Communication, NLA University, Norway where she
teaches on the Global Journalism Program. Carol holds a PhD from the
Media Studies Institute, University of Oslo.
Angella Napakol (PhD) is a Senior Lecturer and Head of Communication
Department at Uganda Chris-tian University. Angella holds a PhD from
Center for Communication, Culture and Media Studies, University of
KwaZulu Natal, Durban, South Africa
Send your queries and abstracts to: (carol.dralega /at/ nla.no) or
(anapakol /at/ ucu.ac.ug) by September 15, 2020.
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