About the blog
This blog considers issues related to the mass media and the political process, particularly as those two intersect. As a media scholar, I believe that the primary reason for the First Amendment, and for American journalism, is to help U.S. citizens govern themselves. But unless the new media choose to accept that role, and unless media users have some degree of media literacy, journalism can do relatively little in promoting a democratic society. Because of those factors, and because the United States is the most media-immersed culture on earth, this site also will discuss issues related to media literacy in general.
I am a professor of communication studies at Whitworth University in Spokane, Wash. My publications include two books (pictured below), The Conservatism Resurgence and the Press: The Media’s Role in the Rise of the Right (Northwestern University Press, 2008), and Journalism at the End of the American Century, 1965-Present (Praeger/Greenwood, 2006); chapters in four other books; articles in Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly, American Journalism, Journalism History, and the Journal of Mass Media Ethics; and numerous other articles, conference papers and book reviews.
I have a Ph.D. in journalism, history and political science from Washington State University, and am active in the American Journalism Historians Association. A former newspaper reporter, editor and public relations professional, I teach Media Criticism, Mass Media History, Reporting, Writing for Mass Media, and Editing, Layout & Design. I also advise Whitworth University’s award-winning student newspaper, The Whitworthian. A primary reason for this blog is the same as for many other things I do: my students at Whitworth University. As a teacher of media studies, media history and journalism skills classes, I want to use as many ways as possible to try to connect with and to learn from those students. I hope they–and you, whoever you may be–will join in the conversation.