The significance of cultural aspects in Latin America’s media image: the representation of the continent in the German press

Regina Cazzamatta

Abstract


This paper focuses on Latin America’s cultural coverage produced by the German press – Süddeutsche ZeitungFrankfurter Allgemeine ZeitungDer Spiegel and tageszeitung – from January 2000 to December 2014. At first, one analysed the main subjects areas of coverage amidst 3.831 articles and identified a surprisingly 17% amount of cultural reports (662 news items). While empirical results on foreign reports worldwide point to a weak representation of cultural themes and an intense concentration on politics, this does not apply fully in the case of Latin America. Brazil, Argentina, Mexico (with an intense power status and economic proximity) and Cuba (still a myth in the German perception) show a high amount of cultural coverage with a broader spectrum of themes, from music and literature to art, architecture and exhibitions. On the contrary, the cultural coverage of small Central American nations concentrates on travel & tourism, an indicator of exoticism. South American states also have a good share of cultural reporting due to the presence of German cultural organisations such as the Goethe Institute. Eight qualitative interviews with German correspondents provide a more profound interpretation and contextualisation of these findings.  

 

Keywords: Latin America’s foreign reporting, cultural coverage, international communication, Latin American image, news factors. 

 


Keywords


Latin America’s foreign reporting, cultural coverage, international communication, Latin American image, news factors.

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Journal of Latin American Communication Research - 2014

 

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