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From voice to voices: Identifying a plurality of Muslim sources in the British news media

Munnik, Michael ORCID: 2014. From voice to voices: Identifying a plurality of Muslim sources in the British news media. Presented at: British Association for Islamic Studies, Edinburgh, 10-11 April 2014.

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This article points to a qualitative change in the diversity of actors who represent Muslims in British news media. Hitherto, the literature discussing Muslims and the media has tended to characterise media organisations as institutions which portray Muslims in an essentialised, monolithic way. In contrast, I propose in this article that the process of representation is more complex, including greater agency and engagement of Muslims than the prevailing literature suggests. Sociological studies demonstrate competition between official and unofficial sources to determine the representations that journalists employ in their texts, and I apply this to Muslim communities in Glasgow. Using qualitative methods drawn from media production analysis, including participant-observation and ethnographic interviews, I identify a shift from a “gatekeeper” model of representing the community to that of a plurality of sources which reveals and insists on the diversity of Muslim communities and voices. I will show (i) why a wider range of actors emerged to speak publicly, (ii) what differentiates them (institutionally, politically, religiously, and by gender), and (iii) how they view themselves as representatives of the community. This focus on production and on source strategies brings fresh insights to a field dominated by content analysis and a “media-centric” approach.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Last Modified: 31 Oct 2022 09:23

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