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Cambridge University Press
Expected online publication date:
August 2024
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Book description

In the Shadow of the Global North unpacks the historical, cultural, and institutional forces that organize and circulate journalistic narratives in Africa to show that something complex is unfolding in the postcolonial context of global journalistic landscapes, especially the relationships between cosmopolitan and national journalistic fields. Departing from the typical discourse about journalistic depictions of Africa, j. Siguru Wahutu turns our focus to the underexplored journalistic representations created by African journalists reporting on African countries. In assessing news narratives and the social context within which journalists construct these narratives, Wahutu captures not only the marginalization of African narratives by African journalists but opens up an important conversation about what it means to be an African journalist, an African news organization, and African in the postcolony.


‘In In the Shadow of the Global North, james Wahutu has produced a deeply provocative intellectual piece that meticulously illuminates the normative character and role of African journalism in the construction of knowledge about Africa. The book provides an alluringly sharp, and arguably fresh empirical and conceptual direction into the debates around the representations of Africa by uniquely centring and projecting the role of African journalists and experiences in ways that emphatically challenge, and rebuff entrenched (Western) conceptions of media representations of Africa, even as it draws on Western sociological theory. The book is a must-read for anyone interested in rethinking existing discourses on the representation of Africa in the news media.’

Hayes Mawindi Mabweazara - School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Glasgow, UK

‘Wahutu’s remarkable, original contribution is long-overdue - African journalism and journalism scholarship has for too long been colonized by scholars who would impose colonialist, paternalistic pathologies rather than appreciating its contribution as ‘just different.’ This deftly researched and theoretically-rich scholarship simultaneously makes the case for the importance of sovereignty and recognition of the African journalistic tradition while also identifying the complicity African journalists have in silencing African voices and reifying narratives of ethnic conflict, marginalization, and helplessness.’

Nikki Usher - author of News for the Rich, White, and Blue: How Place and Power Distort American Journalism


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