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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The historical and contemporary representation of Africa in global media flows: can the continent speak back for itself on its own terms?
Author:Tsikata, Prosper YaoISNI
Periodical:Communicatio: South African journal for communication theory and research (ISSN 1753-5379)
Geographic terms:Africa
South Africa
Subjects:mass media
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/02500167.2014.835530
Abstract:For decades (perhaps, centuries) global media outlets have framed and represented Africa in a negative light. These media representations have tended to overlook the diverse political, economic, social and cultural experiences of individual African countries - a situation that has led to the uncritical lumping together of African nations under the appellation of 'Africa'. When this happens, the specific and unique conditions of its 55 nations are squeezed into a one-size-fits-all media frame. Historical and ideological forces, both from within and outside the continent, have conspired to impose this fate on Africa. The philosophies of negritude and the Organisation of African Unity were among the complicit internal forces helping to sustain such views. To evaluate this phenomenon, this essay examines the underpinnings of the framing and representation of 'Africa' in global media through a review of the literature, and seeks to answer the question of whether the continent can speak for itself, using four country-specific examples (Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa and Zimbabwe). Current media practices within the African continent, enabled by local media policies and infrastructure, have tended to rhetorically position countries primarily in accordance with their national identities, while attributing the African appellation as a secondary frame of representation. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]