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Manuscript deadline
20 January 2021

Cover image - Journalism Practice

Journalism Practice

Special Issue Editor(s)

Dr Sadia Jamil, Khalifa University of Science & Technology, Abu Dhabi, UAE
[email protected]

Associate Professor Jessica Retis, University of Arizona, USA
[email protected]

Dr. Paul Murschetz, Austrian Academy of Sciences & University of Digital Sciences, Berlin
[email protected]

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Media Discourses and Representation of Marginalized Communities in Multicultural Societies

Theme rationale and scope

Albeit an increase in awareness of minority problems, people from immigrant, ethno-cultural and diverse racial groups or who are lesbian, bisexual, gay or transgender or who are from low income groups, do not have the same access to media like majority members of the society (Jackson and Moshin 2013). In any democratic society, circumstances like this should not be marginalised in particular because news cannot be perceived merely as commodity for lucid public discourse, but as the public construction of exact images of society. This implies that one of the central problems to address when scrutinizing the contribution of the news media in community-building is its relationship to cultural diversity (Mihelj 2012). Although representation and visibility of minorities in mass media, reflects just one of a number of factors related with the standing of minority groups in society, its influence should not be underestimated. Both theory and empirical research on media discourse, suggests that stereotypes arise from and are maintained via interaction with the messages offered in mass media fare (Mastro and Tukachinsky 2012). Journalists and media professionals, in many parts of the world, replicates part of the everyday biased practices against members of marginalized communities, whether in pejorative, offensive and abusive texts or speeches, or by way of other strategies employed for marginalization and barring from media discourses. Often, minority members are depicted through a negative lens by the news media and most usually as a homogenous group rather than as individuals. In addition, they are scarcely visible in news media, either through exclusion from majority establishment or through self-invisibility practices (Lasorsa and Rodriguez 2013). In contrast, the news media also produce discourses that attempt to identify the difficulties regarding discrimination and social exclusion of members of marginalized communities, and they struggle to fight for equal human rights. In any case, the news media have a deep effect on their audiences and should be prudently considered in matters of representation and visibility of minorities (Downs 2002).

Media discourses and Marginalized Communities in Multicultural Societies is Journalism Practice’s special edition with a purpose to present impactful studies offering insights into the news media’s role in jeopardizing the representation of minority/or marginalized groups, as well as to address their potential role to combat discrimination against members of marginalized groups such as minority racial and ethnic communities, drug users and drug addicts, sex workers, LGBT persons, and people living with HIV. The term media discourses does not merely imply the manner in which facts or reality is represented in the electronic and printed media, relatively the manner in which reality is shaped by the journalists and media professionals. Thus, one of the key contributions of this special edition is to underline the power and influence of media discourses to not only present, but rather shape social practices.

In this special issue, we will look at media discourses around marginalized communities in multicultural societies in various parts of the world from diverse perspectives.

Suggested topics:
Possible areas of interest include, but are not limited to:
• The role of the news media in community-building is its relationship to cultural diversity;
• The existing stereotypes in news media about racially and culturally marginalized communities in different context;
• The broader societal implications of negative and offensive portrayal of marginalized communities such as minority racial and ethnic communities, drug users and drug addicts, sex workers, LGBT persons, people living with HIV;
• The role of news media to fight against marginalization of minority communities in various contexts;
• How digitalization of news media has influenced the representation and visibility of marginalized communities or groups in different contexts.

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Submission Instructions


If you are interested in participating in this special issue, please submit an extended abstract (500-750 words), accompanied by a 100-150- word bio introducing your relevant expertise.

Abstracts should be sent no later than 5th August, 2020 to corresponding guest editor Dr Sadia Jamil at [email protected] and co-guest editors: Associate Professor Jessica Retis ([email protected]) and Dr Paul Murschetz ([email protected])

Upon selection, scholars will be notified by 19th August and they shall be invited to submit full papers.

Article submissions should be about 8,000 words in length, including references, and are subject to full blind peer-review, in accordance with the peer-review procedure of Journalism Practice. Manuscripts should be submitted through the journal’s ScholarOne website. Select "special issue title” when submitting your paper to ScholarOne

• Deadline for submission of extended abstracts: 5th August, 2020
• Decision on abstracts: 19th August, 2020
• Deadline for final submission: 20th January, 2020.
• Publication: Online first after acceptance, and later in a forthcoming issue of Journalism Practice.

Instructions for AuthorsSubmit an Article