The political use of fear and news reporting in Italy: The case of Berlusconi's media control

Massimo Ragnedda, W. Glenn Muschert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

Abstract

This chapter explores the relationship between fear of crime and politicaldynamics in Italy. Of particular relevance is the fact that Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is the richest person in Italy, controlling a large share of themass media industry. Berlusconi uses his media influence to cultivate thepublic's fear of crime, for his own political gain. The chapter explores the socialscience literature concerning public issues, media coverage, and public fear. TheItalian media landscape is described, including Berlusconi's direct or indirectcontrol of various media. The main thrust of the chapter explores the aspects of Berlusconi's manipulation of crime coverage in media, which manipulates thepublic's fear of crime, which in turn may be associated with voting behaviours.Concluding reflections explore the complexities of the model of media manipulation presented and the importance of the Italian case in a global climate of continuing capital accumulation in media industries.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMass media
Subtitle of host publicationcoverage, objectivity, and changes
EditorsHanna V. Kovács
Place of PublicationHauppauge
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Pages67-82
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9781617288630
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes

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