Blasphemy as sacred rite/right: “The mohammed cartoons affair” and maintenance of journalistic ideology

Dan Berkowitz, Lyombe Eko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations

Abstract

The controversy surrounding the publication of 12 cartoons about the Prophet Mohammad by the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten can be seen as an issue of religion and freedom of speech. However, when European and American newspapers began to write articles and opinion pieces on the controversy, it began to represent something larger: the core values of a culture, including beliefs about national identity, immigration, and multiculturalism. This study examines news coverage by France's Le Monde and America's The New York Times through a qualitative textual analysis. Findings suggest that coverage became a journalistic ritual to restate and maintain core values of distinctly different French and American journalistic paradigms, as well as the national cultures from which those paradigms evolved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)779-797
Number of pages19
JournalJournalism Studies
Volume8
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2007

Keywords

  • Cartoons
  • France
  • Journalistic paradigm
  • Jyllands-posten
  • Mohammad
  • Ritual
  • United states

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