Managed mediocrity? Experienced journalists’ perspectives on the “pampers generation” of Russian reporters

Elina Erzikova, Wilson Lowrey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper adopts Bourdieu's field theory to examine a possible professional gap between young and experienced Russian regional journalists. In-depth interviews revealed that experienced journalists have a negative view of their young colleagues, seeing them as unskilled, poorly motivated, mediocre, and submissive to authority. In turn, beginners see the older generation as lacking dynamism and dedication to helping young reporters master professional skills. It appeared that younger reporters tended to choose different professional priorities, to pursue sources of “capital” that derive from beyond the journalistic field, and to follow different historical trajectories than older journalists. Because of the dependency of media on the state and the governmental reward for mediocrity, older study participants tended to doubt that young reporters would seek or obtain a measure of journalistic autonomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)264-279
Number of pages16
JournalJournalism Practice
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2012

Keywords

  • Field theory
  • Journalism
  • Profession
  • Russia

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