The micro- and macrodrama of politics on television: Effects of media format on candidate evaluations

Erik P. Bucy, John E. Newhagen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

A series of focus groups conducted during the 1992 presidential campaign were shown four clips of then-candidate Bill Clinton in different political communication settings. Analysis of the focus group discourse reveals that viewers process media formats featuring close-ups in terms of individual candidate attributes, while they regard political advertising and televised town meetings with multiple actors (candidate, audience members, and journalists) as contextualized social phenomena. Findings suggest that production techniques and stage factors, including varying shot lengths, image graphication, and the social context of media appearances, can either associate candidates with other elements on the media stage, or disassociate them from externals while focusing on their persona.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-210
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media
Volume43
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1999

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