Humanitarian Crises and Intervention: Reassessing the Impact of Mass Media

Soderlund, Walter C., Briggs, E. Donald, Hildebrandt, Kai, Salam Sidahmed, Abdel

Published by Kumarian Press, 2008
ISBN 10: 1565492617 / ISBN 13: 9781565492615
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Synopsis: As the Cold War began to wind down in the early '90s, former colonies were besieged by a string of humanitarian crises that killed millions of people and forced many millions more to leave their homes and livelihoods. A cruel paradox was revealed: just as the concept of “Responsibility to Protect” human rights was challenging the principle of “State Sovereignty”, no state with the capacity to do so was actually willing to intervene in a crisis based solely on humanitarian grounds.

This book takes a unique and comprehensive look at how the international community, led by the US, responded to ten humanitarian crises of the last decade and how major media outlets played a role in influencing (or failing to influence) action. Crises examined include Liberia, East Timor, Somalia, Sudan, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Angola, Haiti, and the Congo. Soderlund and Briggs apply the same analytic method to each case to discover why the international community was unwilling, time and time again, to address this new brand of conflict that appeared at the time.

About the Author: E. Donald Briggs is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Windsor where he taught international relations and African politics from 1963 until his retirement in 1999. His interest in mass media dates back to his Ph.D. dissertation, The Anglo-French Incursion into Suez, 1956, which analyzed press opinion regarding the legality of the 1956 Suez invasion. Among his publications are Media and Elections in Canada (1984) and “The Zapatista Rebellion in Chiapas, 1994" (2003). For many years he was the coordinator of the World University Service Canada (WUSC) program at the University of Windsor, in which capacity he was responsible for sponsoring fifteen refugee students to Canada from conflict-ridden countries in Africa, many from those studied in this book.

Walter C. Soderlund is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Political Science at the University of Windsor. He is the author of Media Definitions of Cold War Reality (2001) and Mass Media and Foreign Policy (2003), as well as the co-editor of Television Advertising in Canadian Elections (1999), Profiles of Canada (2003) and Canadian Newspaper Ownership in the Era of Convergence (2005). He has a long-standing interest in intervention, beginning in the late 1960s with research for his Ph.D. dissertation, The Functional Roles of Intervention in International Politics. He has also worked extensively in the area of international communication, where his focus has been on the Caribbean, especially the way in which events in Cuba and Haiti have been portrayed in North American media and the possible impact of this coverage on U. S. foreign policy. Following his retirement in 2002, he served for a year as the founding Director of the University of Windsor’s Centre for Studies in Social Justice and in 2004 organized Assumption University’s Centre for Religion and Culture.

Kai Hildebrandt is Associate Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Windsor. He co-authored Germany in Transition (1981) and co-edited Television Advertising in Canadian Elections (1999). An expert in the use of quantitative and qualitative research methods, he recently completed a comparative study of legal education focused on issues of access to and success of legal education. He is the co-editor of Canadian Newspaper Ownership in the Era of Convergence (2005) and is currently working on a project assessing the impact of media ownership convergence in reducing the diversity of content available to Canadian audiences.

Abdel Salam Sidahmed is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Windsor. From 1995 to 2005 he held a number of positions at the International Secretariat, Amnesty International, London, including the post of Director of the Middle East Program. His authored and co-authored publications include: Sudan (2005 -in the Routledge Curzon contemporary Middle East Series); Politics and Islam in Contemporary Sudan (1997); and Islamic Fundamentalism (1996 -nominated for the 1998 Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order). He was an Honorary Research Fellow, Institute of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, University of Durham and lectured at Centre of Middle Eastern and Islamic Law in the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.

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Title: Humanitarian Crises and Intervention: ...
Publisher: Kumarian Press
Publication Date: 2008
Book Condition: Very Good

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