Journalism professor seems at how satire TV information reveals could also be driving elevated voter
Posted on: October 14, 2021; Up to date on: October 14, 2021
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Civic engagement is crucial to the pursuit of an equitable and affluent society
— and civic duty is a cornerstone of upper schooling, particularly on the
College of South Carolina.
Whether or not it’s a journalism professor learning political engagement, a prison justice
professor mentoring future mentors, a enterprise professor inviting an undergraduate
into his analysis on group unfold of COVID , UofSC school have an effect on the higher
group year-round, around the clock and in methods you may by no means think about.
Political satire — notably TV reveals in that style — could also be a gateway to civic
engagement. Satire may do extra to foster engagement than conventional late-night
speak reveals, says assistant professor of journalism and self-described “information junkie”
“One of many first belongings you be taught when learning American politics is that almost all People
should not very inquisitive about politics,” Lengthy says. “We have seen a surge in curiosity in
politics starting with the 2016 election, however a number of the fundamental information stay the
identical: Most individuals aren’t spending numerous time with conventional information sources.”
So Lengthy, who has levels in political science and communication, checked out different methods
of consuming political information, notably by leisure reveals, reminiscent of The Every day Present, with Jon Stewart or Trevor Noah, and Saturday Night time Dwell.
I used to be intrigued by the concept that media might be each entertaining and promote civic
values like participation within the system.
Jacob Lengthy, assistant professor of journalism
He additionally checked out late-night speak reveals, which have change into extra politically oriented
the previous 5 or so years. Research contributors had been requested about which reveals that they had
watched and about their stage of political participation, together with attending a rally
or speech, donating to a marketing campaign, or displaying marketing campaign yard indicators or bumper stickers.
What he discovered was the satire reveals, those that some apprehensive would make individuals much less
prone to be taught extra about politics, had been in truth those that drove elevated political
“By the point I began doing analysis, there have been already many indicators that these packages
weren’t dangerous as some had feared. However I used to be intrigued by the concept that media might
be each entertaining and promote civic values like participation within the system,” Lengthy
The Pew Analysis Heart, a nonpartisan data group, reported than extra
than 158 million ballots had been solid within the 2020 presidential election — virtually two-thirds
of estimated eligible voters. That’s the highest price of turnout since at the very least 1980,
which is the earliest yr within the Pew Heart’s evaluation.
Whereas his analysis reveals a rise in data looking for amongst these watching the
satire reveals, there isn’t a indication about whether or not the packages themselves change
anybody’s political views.
“It does present that when politics are an express a part of leisure, that may push
individuals to hunt extra data from conventional sources and in addition make them really feel extra
like they’ve the instruments to take part in our democratic processes,” he says. “I
additionally suspect the best way politics appears to have creeped into extra spheres of our lives
could also be an enormous a part of the explanation for the unprecedented stage of curiosity within the 2020
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