Producing representations: an ethnographic approach to the study of Australian news texts

Tanya Muscat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The depiction of both the ‘Australian’ identity and the ‘other’ contained in television news and current affairs, requires a consideration of the factors which impact the production of news texts, particularly regarding commercial media. As a nation-state, Australia has an increasingly diversified socio-demographic composition and a unique broadcast television media environment. While textual analysis may elucidate the identity representations that feature in news, an ethnographic study of the news-making process will demonstrate the process of hegemonic negotiation which impacts the dynamics of production and results in distinctive group formations of the ‘Australian’ and the ‘other’. An overview of Australian research concerned with the portrayal of national identity and the ‘other’ in both print and television news demonstrates a lack of ethnographic application. In drawing upon wider research, this article argues that ethnographic research methods need to be employed in order to assess the representation of Australian identity and evaluate overall hegemonic group relationships.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
JournalGlobal media journal : Australian edition
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012


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