Media and International Politics

What do we know about the world, and how accurate is what we think we know? Nearly everything we learn about international affairs, particularly international politics, comes to us through some kind of media filter. Not surprisingly, these media have a profound influence on our perceptions of the rest of the world. Already in 1787, Edmund Burke had labeled the news media a non-official branch of government, or “the fourth estate.” Modern advancements of communication approaches and technologies—the telegraph, radio, television, film, and the Internet—have further colored the lenses through which we view diplomacy and foreign affairs. This course investigates the relationship between the media and international politics through a series of crucial case studies.