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Multicultural Discourses in Emerging States: Communication Challenges of the Digital Age

Journal of Multicultural Discourses Special Issue Call for Papers

Deadline: 1 September 2019

Today, we observe how Russia, Brazil, India, China, South Africa and other countries (Argentina, Australia, Colombia, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and others) the term ‘Emerging States’ has been sometimes applied to, are fast becoming important players on the international stage (Jaffrelot, 2009). The historical path of ‘Emerging States’, accompanied by major social and political transformations, territorial shifts and changes of political regimes in the 20th century, as well as the growing presence of these countries in global economy, politics, culture and communication, defined by scholars as ‘the rise of ‘rest’ (Amsden, 2001), make them an interesting and timely case to study.

Yet often, scholars approach multicultural discourses in ‘Emerging States’ from a ‘Western’ perspective which is not always applicable or suitable to countries with a different historical path of development, as well as political, social and cultural legacy. In this special issue, we will discuss how social, political, economic, technological and cultural transformations ‘Emerging States’ evolved in 20-21st centuries influenced cross-cultural communication in these countries from a cultural discourse studies perspective (Shi-xu, 2015), as well as the impact these major events had upon people’s identities (e.g. Wojnowski, 2015; Davies, 1997; Tishkov, 2008). Furthermore, we argue that regardless of national specifics and current peculiarities of ‘Emerging States’’ communication systems, there are challenges in all multicultural/multi-ethnic societies in that region that they are facing under ongoing digitalization process.

In this vein, we will examine changes enabled and intensified by the overall spread of ICTs in the world, including the rise of digital divide and digital exclusion, which are still serious issues in BRICS and other countries of the ‘Emerging States’ group. We will see how the remaining digital gap is affecting communication across cultural and ethnic groups, and how digital inequalities in access and skills (e.g. Norris, 2001; Attewell, 2001; Hargittai, 2002; van Dijk, 2013) are developing into social inequalities (e.g. van Deursen, & van Dijk, 2015; Ragnedda, 2017; Vartanova, 2018) in the multicultural setting of these countries. Furthermore, we will see how media in ethnic languages are currently transforming their editorial and content strategies in the digital environment (e.g. Gladkova et al, 2019; Blokhin, 2008; Garifullin, 2017), and how role and functions of journalists working for such media are changing in the modern convergent newsrooms (e.g. Vyrkovsky et al, 2019; Galkina & Lehtisaari, 2016; Vartanova, 2012). We will also look at media consumption practices, discussing how the consumption of news varies in different ethnic and cultural groups, from anthropological and social discourse studies perspectives (e.g. Thussu, 2019; Dobek-Ostrowska, Glowacki, Jakubowitz, & Sukosd, 2010; Fourie, 2017). Lastly, we will examine current communication and media policy on both federal and regional levels aimed at supporting offline and online activities of cultural, linguistic and ethnic groups in ‘Emerging States’ (e.g. de Smaele, 2012; Nordenstreng, & Thussu, 2015; Wasserman, 2011).

In this special issue, we will look at communication in the multicultural societies of ‘Emerging States’ through the following lenses:

  • Social, political, economic, cultural, technological transformations of ‘Emerging States’, and their impact upon cultural discourses;
  • Digital communication as a dimension of ‘soft power’ in ‘Emerging States’;
  • Diasporas and multicultural discourses;
  • Digital inequalities in access/skills/benefits of cultural and ethnic groups leading to new social divides;
  • Development of multiculturalism models in ‘Emerging States’ under current digitalization process;
  • Constructing ethnic/cultural/linguistic/religious identities in ‘Emerging States’;
  • Ethnic media in the new digital environment: audiences, content strategies, roles and functions of journalists;
  • Digital media consumption of cultural and ethnic groups, the rise of digital natives;
  • Communication policy and its role in supporting intercultural communication across various groups in the society / between societies on a global level.

We welcome contributions from diverse fields of study and methodologies. The special issue is open for general submissions and decisions about inclusion will be quality based, relying on peer reviewing.

Journal of Multicultural Discourses

Language: en-UK

Publisher: Routledge

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Submission guidelines

Deadline for abstract submission (300-500 words, indicating central questions, methodology, and theoretical framework): September 1, 2019. Submissions are to be sent to Elena Vartanova evarta@mail.ru and Anna Gladkova gladkova_a@list.ru

Authors notified of decision: September 15, 2019

Deadline for completed articles: December 15, 2020 (maximum 8000 words in length; submission on ScholarOne and followed by the blind peer-review)

Preliminary publication date (after peer-review): Spring 2020

Editorial Information

Guest editors:

Professor Dr. Elena Vartanova holds the position of the Dean and Chair in Media Theory and Economics at the Faculty of Journalism, Lomonosov Moscow State University. Her research interests focus on the impact of digital technologies upon journalism and media systems, issues of media economics and media management, digital divide, transformation of media systems under national and global tendencies, etc. Professor Vartanova is a member of IAMCR, EMMA, ICA, ECREA, IMMAA, ORBICOM and other academic organizations. She is also the founder and the President of the National Association of Russian Mass Media Researchers (NAMMI), founder and first chair of the Digital Divide Working Group in IAMCR, and corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Education.

Dr. Anna Gladkova holds the position of Senior Researcher and Director of International Affairs Office at the Faculty of Journalism, Lomonosov Moscow State University. She is also vice-chair of the Digital Divide Working Group in IAMCR and a member of ECREA, ICA and other academic organizations. Dr. Gladkova has published and edited collections on ethnic media, multicultural affairs, digital inequalities and digital divides. She was awarded a number of research grants, including the one from Presidential grant council for the state support of young Russian scholars and ‘Russian International Education Administrators’ grant from Fulbright.

Published on 2nd July. Last updated on 10th October 2019.