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The Space of OpinionMedia Intellectuals and the Public Sphere$
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Ronald N. Jacobs and Eleanor Townsley

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199797929

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199797929.001.0001

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A History of Opinion in the U.S. Media

A History of Opinion in the U.S. Media

(p.16) 2 A History of Opinion in the U.S. Media
The Space of Opinion

Ronald N. Jacobs

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 traces the history of the space of opinion and analyzes the rise of the special class of media pundits who dominate it. It chronicles the rise to influence of the newspaper columnist in the early 20th century, focusing on the career of Walter Lippmann. With the development of television in the 1950s and the subsequent rise of talk formats, televised political talk increasingly came to dominate public political discussions. In both print and television, different formats provided distinct strategies for dealing with two challenges: (1) the tensions between autonomy and influence, and (2) the need to present complex issues to mass publics. These different strategies have clear implications for how we think about media, opinion formation, and processes of democratic deliberation.

Keywords:   McClures, The New Republic, The Atlantic, New York Times, USA Today, The NewsHour, Crossfire, Face the Nation, Hannity & Colmes, Walter Lippman

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