Power without Responsibility - Media Power and Media Consumption in Britain - JN500

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2019-20
Medway Autumn
View Timetable
5 15 (7.5) DR B Cocking


JOUR3000 (JN300) History of Journalism
JOUR3020 (JN302) British Government and Politics





How news and information was accessed in 1945, the importance of national, regional and local newspapers and the role of radio. The impact of television on news consumption and the importance of ITN and the rise of commercial media. Relationship between journalism and political power, and the role of spin in the era of broadcast dominance. Changing patterns of foreign coverage and the understanding of faraway disasters. Reporting 'The Troubles' in Ireland and the role of journalism in uncovering miscarriages of justice. Emergence and growth of 24 hour rolling news on radio and television and its impact on the political process. Online reporting, blogging and citizen journalism


This module appears in:

Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 20
Private Study Hours: 130
Total Study Hours: 150


Autumn term

Method of assessment

Essay – 50%
Examination – 50%

Indicative reading

Allan, S (ed.) (2005), Journalism: Critical Issues, Open University Press, Maidenhead
Allan, S (ed.) (2010), The Routledge Companion to News and Journalism, Routledge, London
Barnett, S (2011), The Rise and Fall of Television Journalism, Bloomsbury, London
Conboy, M (2011), Journalism in Britain: a historical introduction, Sage, London
Curran, J and Seaton, J (2010), Power Without Responsibility: Press, broadcasting and the internet in Britain. 7th edn, Routledge, London
Fenton, N (ed.) (2010), New Media, Old News: Journalism and Democracy in the Digital Age, Sage, London
Franklin, B (2004), Packaging Politics: Political Communications in Britain's Media Democracy, 2nd edn, Hodder Arnold, London
Hargreaves, I (2003), Journalism: Truth or Dare? Oxford University Press, Oxford
Harrison, J (2006), News, Routledge, London
McNair, B (2009), News and Journalism in the UK, 5th edn, Routledge, London
Page, B (2011), Murdoch's Archipelago, rev edn, Simon & Schuster, London
Seymour-Ure, C (1996), The British Press and Broadcasting since 1945, 2nd edn, Blackwell, Oxford

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

1. Understand the growth and nature of media power since 1945 and particularly its relationship with the political process
2. Set patterns of media consumption in their historical context
3. Evaluate the mechanisms of media regulation and critically assess their effectiveness
4. Demonstrate familiarity with the influence of broadcast media
5. Assess the continuing significance of the national, regional and local press
6. Critically assess the impact of the internet on media power and media consumption
7. Demonstrate awareness of the economic forces that have framed the press, broadcast and online industries since 1945 and the role of these industries in specific areas of political and cultural life

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.