The What, How, and Why of This Book
Economic inequalities have become increasingly prominent in recent public debates, not least in the context of the latest Great Recession that followed from the financial crash in 2007, and attendant austerity regimes in many countries. In the fields of political economy and media and journalism studies, the authors observe important and parallel blind spots which serve to further underline the distinctive value and potential of the present book: questions concerning economic processes in general, and the highly sensitive subtheme of economic inequalities have been relatively neglected in academic fields specializing in news media and journalism studies. The major schools of theory and analysis in mainstream economics have also paid relatively little explicit attention to the evolving scope, role, or implications of mediated communication in the conduct and performance of economic processes in general, as well as in the highly sensitive subarena of economic inequalities. This chapter introduces the key concerns and issues addressed in this book, as well as the distinctive, transdisciplinary approach and the original empirical research studies that inform this book. It identifies key blind spots in the existing research and explains the ambition of this distinctive study to shed new light on the features of news media coverage of economic inequality, as well as on related debates on taxation and other policies impacting the distribution of wealth and income.
Keywords: economic inequality, redistribution policies, wealth taxes, critical discourse analysis, significant silences, news making, journalism practice, political communication, news media and journalism studies
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