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It's Labour, but not as we know it.’ Media lesson-drawing and the disciplining of social democracy: a case study
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 20:14 authored by Tim Bale
A qualitative content analysis of New Zealand newspapers from 1997 to 2002 shows how the overwhelmingly conservative print media in that country used a highly partial version of Tony Blair's New Labour to try to help set parameters for its New Zealand counterpart and point it in what it saw as the right direction. Globalisation rests on the flow of ideas as well as the flow of trade: it has an important ideational component that the media—internationally owned though often parochially focused—helps construct by drawing lessons from abroad. The thrust of the coverage analysed was to transnationalise a business-friendly common sense concerning the proper—indeed the inevitable—response of a modern social democratic party to a globalised political economy. Whether this actually affected the behaviour of the New Zealand variant of social democracy, however, is a moot point. Finally, in keeping with Lijphart's seminal discussion of the purpose of case studies, this one generates the following hypothesis: that the print media in one country will interpret the domestic politics of other countries (other than those which are geographically closest or economically crucial) in such a way as to try to influence the outcome of political and policy debates at home.
JournalBritish Journal of Politics and International Relations
Department affiliated with
- Politics Publications
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