Goldsmiths - University of London

Whither Mass Media and Power? Evidence for a Critical Elite Theory Alternative

Davis, Aeron. 2003. Whither Mass Media and Power? Evidence for a Critical Elite Theory Alternative. Media, Culture and Society, 25(5), pp. 669-690. ISSN 0163-4437 [Article]

No full text available

Abstract or Description

This article makes the case that critical research in media studies needs to devote more attention to the part played by media and culture in elite decision-making. It argues that the mass media/mass influence paradigm is, of itself, no longer adequate to explain the utility of communications in the sustenance of unequal power relations in society. Instead, evidence presented here observes that a major function of news media is to act as a communications forum for elites in their daily conflicts and negotiations. With elites acting as sources, targets and major recipients of news texts, inter-elite, rather than elite-mass, communications seems to be a key feature of the political process. These findings are based on a series of 98 semi-structured interviews with political and corporate news sources, and senior journalists in the UK.

Item Type: Article

Identification Number (DOI):


Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Media and Communications



Item ID:


Date Deposited:

20 Oct 2015 09:35

Last Modified:

27 Jun 2017 14:09

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI: http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/14250
Edit Record Edit Record (login required)