State of insecurity: representations of post-September 11 insecurity by Australian governmental authorities and newspaper media

Bossio, D 2009, State of insecurity: representations of post-September 11 insecurity by Australian governmental authorities and newspaper media, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Applied Communication, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title State of insecurity: representations of post-September 11 insecurity by Australian governmental authorities and newspaper media
Author(s) Bossio, D
Year 2009
Abstract This thesis argues that a discourse of post-September 11 insecurity has continually evolved through power relations between the government and news media in Australia. Informed by Foucault’s theorisations of discourse, power and governmentality within a broader cultural studies approach, this thesis explores how governmental attempts to stabilise meaning over time have been both contested and confirmed within various Australian newspapers.

The analysis will firstly illustrate that a discourse of post-September 11 insecurity has been perpetuated by Australian government attempts to establish terrorism as the primary source of insecurity and legislation and war as its appropriate response. I suggest that governmental authorities situate themes of terrorism, war and legislation within what I term ‘epistemological frameworks’, namely ‘otherness’, ‘legitimation’ and ‘exceptionalism’, to confirm and perpetuate this particular understanding of insecurity.

By then working through a series of case studies I will argue that ongoing contestation of both these themes and frameworks leads to continual shifts in the meaning of insecurity. To make this argument, a textual analysis will be undertaken of both newspaper reportage and material produced by the government such as advertising campaigns and press releases. This analysis will allow me to trace the complex discursive interactions between government and media, and illustrate their negotiations of the meaning of post-September 11 insecurity over time.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Applied Communication
Keyword(s) None supplied
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Created: Wed, 27 Jun 2012, 10:22:19 EST by Guy Aron
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