National Belonging, Convergence Methodologies & Media Representations of Power

Recent contact with established journalist, Olja Beckovic has enhanced an understanding of the current state of media within Serbia. I begin this post with an understanding of power and responsibility, formed by knowledge of Curran (1981). Beckovic tends to research into the future of Serbian media and what forms still matter most. This often begs the question, of how can Serbian journalists improve the current situation and what would it take to readdress the state of national belonging affected by current mediated awareness.

Previous posts suggest strongly theories of Utopia Socialism: considered in terms of power by Engles (1880) of the attempt to provide a perfect solution therefore a ‘new’ world. Kumar, however, brings in the concept of technology into this new world utopia. Kumar (1981:302) suggests, “The utopian tide of the 1960’s flowed largely within a tide of technological optimism” ultimately the argument was not technological but against its abuse of technology. Technology, for journalists in Serbia especially, is a key tool that is necessary of the duty of reporter. Considering Zoric (2010) who engages in her understanding of security in Serbia by the advancement of technology going mobile and adapting to a professional lifestyle confidence of identity grows. The positionality of a female researcher is noted here, as the self-security is assured rather than being flanked by camera crew (‘men’). Media tends to be seen as a freedom of expression, especially under the works of Beckovic, which will be interesting to note her career development to become a journalist in the early 90’s, the same time as the position to be political TV show host, “The Impression of the Week”. In terms of security, perhaps the visual identification of her own image projected, and then nationally, was taken advantage of.

Curran (1981) identifies theories stemming from Foucault, whom identifies surveillance culture and control whilst still suggesting the potential for regulation. Contemporary theory comes under scrutiny here, the idea of subjectivity of understanding yourself, particularly one’s positionality as a researcher and/or reporter – which can often be suggested has similar connotations. We are often self disciplining and self monitoring, leading directly to discourses of surveillance which is interesting to consider in terms of Foucault & Althusser.

Feelings do not often have a linear history though they are being connected- as a narrative. This narrative can be displayed within works of journalism as expression of a news or event has been chosen but how that story has become represented and what facts appear to be chosen due to how the knowledge has formed as the researcher. “We are becoming … Not being”. Here, considering Serbia and what research that has been uncovered so far – the promise of happiness appears to be strongly motivating despite closure not being found in Belgrade.

Focusing on convergence mythology: Curran (1981:282):

“The rise of transnational media and globalization are weakening, in this view, identification with the nation. They are also said to be eroding engagement in national politics since this derives ultimately from a sense of national belonging”.

I am interested in the concept of national belonging for a journalist in Serbia. How is their future being contrasted by the catalyst of mobile technology and the advancement of how we receive our media? When borders are historically changing, how does it position itself (the researcher or journalist) in contact with its borders and neighbours – do they shape that individual subjectively through a grand fusion of technologies.

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National Belonging, Convergence Methodologies & Media Representations of Power

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