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Race-baiter : how the media wields dangerous words to divide a nation (edition 2012)

by Eric Deggans

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3016367,255 (3.63)4
Member:Bcteagirl
Title:Race-baiter : how the media wields dangerous words to divide a nation
Authors:Eric Deggans
Info:Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire ; New York, NY : Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.
Collections:Read but unowned, Read in any year
Rating:****
Tags:Won, Non-fiction, 12 in 12 Challenge, Read in 2012

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Race-Baiter: How the Media Wields Dangerous Words to Divide a Nation by Eric Deggans

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Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
Great view into journalism, media, race relations. I haven't read any other books on the subject but this seemed to be a fair assessment of what goes on "behind the scenes" and often right in front of our faces.

Mr. Deggans gives away the magician's secrets, whether those magicians are news anchors, radio talk show hosts, screenplay writers or"reality" shows actors, he tells you what to look for to understand what's really happening and how they make it look or sound like something else.

He talks about the problems people have with discussing race, suggests ways we can get past those problems. He talks about drawing attention to racism masked with key phrases and probably most importantly about talking about race before something racial explodes rather than waiting for things to explode.

Another interesting point is that "color blindness" isn't the answer because it ignores differences in culture that really do exist.

A lot of this should be in schoolbooks somewhere. Learning it when your 9 would probably be a lot more helpful than learning it when you're 39. ( )
  ragwaine | Nov 4, 2013 |
More timely than the analyses of recent political events are Deggans' thoughts about the intersection of media, race, and the commons. Whether Americans are discussing the racial dynamics of poverty or power, Deggans contends that the future of the commons is inextricably tied to the course those conversations take. Can there be a national discourse, he asked, when media is tailored to appeal to individuals as consumers in search of satisfying their tastes rather than citizens interested in engaging in something collective?
  aoxford | Jul 26, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I didn't like this book. As a conservative I'd like to see some black leaders acknowledge that some aspects of black culture need to change and that until the out of wedlock birth situation is reversed and education truly valued nothing much will change. ( )
  velopunk | Mar 8, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Eric Deggans' book is a valuable one. Quite frankly it is very difficult to deal with the issue of race in America without running into partisan posturing and people from different backgrounds talking past one another. Deggans manages to penetrate to what is behind the words and he does so in a very non-confrontational manner that engages with a wide audience. I think it is an especially important that white Americans read this book to understand how racism functions and perpetuates itself even when no offense in intended. This book, I think, makes a small step toward mending the racial divide in America. It is well worth reading.
  bucketyell | Feb 25, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Although I found Race-Baiter a very well written, researched, and up to date book, as an African American woman, I didn't learn anything new from it. Deggans explores "race" in cable news, network TV, reality TV, and talk radio. He provides numerous examples of how the media can divide and often shut down discussions of race in America by focusing on both conservative and liberal media. Bias in journalism, propaganda tactics, code works in media, perpetuated stereotypes are all covered. Deggans puts pen to paper what most minorities in the U.S. already know. It was a good read and would recommend it.
  caalynch | Jan 27, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0230341829, Hardcover)

Gone is the era of Edward R. Murrow and Walter Cronkite, when news programs fought to gain the trust and respect of a wide spectrum of American viewers. Today, the fastest-growing news programs and media platforms are fighting hard for increasingly narrow segments of the public and playing on old prejudices and deep-rooted fears, coloring the conversation in the blogosphere and the cable news chatter to distract from the true issues at stake. Using the same tactics once used to mobilize political parties and committed voters, they send their fans coded messages and demonize opposing groups, in the process securing valuable audience share and website traffic. Race-baiter is a term born out of this tumultuous climate, coined by the conservative media to describe a person who uses racial tensions to arouse the passion and ire of a particular demographic. Even as the election of the first black president forces us all to reevaluate how we think about race, gender, culture, and class lines, some areas of modern media are working hard to push the same old buttons of conflict and division for new purposes. In Race-Baiter, veteran journalist and media critic Eric Deggans dissects the powerful ways modern media feeds fears, prejudices, and hate, while also tracing the history of the word and its consequences, intended or otherwise.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:33 -0400)

"Gone is the era of Edward R. Murrow and Walter Cronkite, when news programs fought to gain the trust and respect of a wide spectrum of American viewers. Today, the fastest-growing news programs and media platforms are fighting hard for increasingly narrow segments of the public and playing on old prejudices and deep-rooted fears, coloring the conversation in the blogosphere and the cable news chatter to distract from the true issues at stake. Using the same tactics once used to mobilize political parties and committed voters, they send their fans coded messages and demonize opposing groups, in the process securing valuable audience share and website traffic. Race-baiter is a term born out of this tumultuous climate, coined by the conservative media to describe a person who uses racial tensions to arouse the passion and ire of a particular demographic. Even as the election of the first black president forces us all to reevaluate how we think about race, gender, culture, and class lines, some areas of modern media are working hard to push the same old buttons of conflict and division for new purposes. In Race-Baiter, veteran journalist and media critic Eric Deggans dissects the powerful ways modern media feeds fears, prejudices, and hate, while also tracing the history of the word and its consequences, intended or otherwise"--… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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