Herman Wasserman, Professor of Media Studies and Director of the Centre for Film and Media Studies, University of Cape Town.
Co-sponsored by the Klein College of Media and Communication and the Center for Center for Advanced Research in Global Communication (CARGC), Univ. of Pennsylvania
The media played an important role in the transition from apartheid to democracy in South Africa. As the country’s moves further into the democratic era, that role continues to be contested. While the media has served as a watchdog to expose corruption by the country’s new rulers, it has also been criticized for a bias towards a social elite while neglecting the voices of the country’s poor masses. As the media industry itself faces challenges of changing business models, battling the onslaught of ‘fake news’ and ethical lapses, it also had to contend with its location within shifting geopolitical networks such as the rise of the BRICS countries and the entry of China’s media into the African continent.
This talk will use the South African example to illustrate the intersection of media, democracy and geopolitics as a point of departure to analyse broader issues to do with the role of the media in new democracies, the impact of new global power blocs on media infrastructure, norms and practices, and how power relations play out in media representations and discourses.
About the speaker
Herman Wasserman is Professor of Media Studies and Director of the Centre for Film and Media Studies, University of Cape Town. A former journalist, Wasserman has published widely on media, democracy and ethics in Africa. He is editor-in-chief of the journal African Journalism Studies.