about this item
The academic sub-field of media and conflict has developed and expanded greatly over the past two decades. Operating across an unusually diverse range of academic fields, including political science, communications, journalism and media studies, cultural studies, international relations, sociology and psychology, scholars have engaged with a wide variety of issues concerning media and violent conflict. In no particular order of importance, academics have studied the ways in which news media has both enabled and constrained governments pursuing war, the role of the media as a catalyst for attempts to respond to humanitarian crises, the ways in which actors involved in violent political struggle and terrorists have exploited communication tools to further their aims, the role of media as a facilitator of, and a threat to, both peace building and conflict prevention. Underpinning this diverse and eclectic body of research is the recognition of the centrality of media and communications to our understanding of security and conflict. While the intellectual diversity of this field is an undoubted strength, there is also a pressing need to begin a process of facilitating both the consolidation of existing knowledge and the sketching out of the parameters of sub-field that can provide a location for the array of academics working on media and conflict. This handbook takes the process forward by linking the body of conflict and media research with field of security studies
The handbook is arranged into five sections. The first section ‘Theory and Principles’ explores a range of key theoretical and conceptual issues including various interpretations of the relationship between security and media, normative issues arising as well as locating ‘media and security’ within a broad conceptualisation of media that includes new forms of communication technology and popular culture. The section, overall, will provide a detailed account of state of the art foundational issues relating to how scholars think about media and security and what is considered important to study, and why. The following sections, ‘Media and "Traditional War"’, ‘Media and Human Security’, ‘Media and Policymaking in the Security State’ and 'Media and New Issues in Security' are designed to reflect, in broad terms, the existing research foci of the security studies field.
For scholars of security studies, this handbook will provide a key point of reference for state of the art scholarship concerning the media-security nexus; for scholars of communication and media studies, the handbook will provide a comprehensive mapping of the media-conflict field.