Comparing U.S. and Arab Media Coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict:
Media coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has in recent years been as much of an evolving story as the conflict itself. The emergence of media outlets such as Qatar-based Al Jazeera and a variety of Internet sites, which compete for readers, viewers, and subscribers with American broadcast, print, cable, online, and satellite outlets, has lent complexity to the media landscape.
This literature review examines scholarly and popular discourse of media coverage of the conflict from October 2000 through March 2004. The review will be set in the context of the modern history of the Middle East that has been the subject of American and Arab media attention since 1948, when the state of Israel was created, and that has been the setting for persistent conflict between Israel and Palestinians from that time to this. The scope, limit, and content of both American and Arab/Muslim media coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict will be described first. Because American media practices originate with corporate news organizations, literature dealing with U.S. media polices and practices in general, and, where appropriate, relative to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, will be discussed. The role and function of mass media in Arab society, as well as relevant media-related policies and practices, will also be discussed. The literature review is intended to establish strands of thought as well as biases that inform perceptions and analyses of media portrayals of cleavages between Israelis and Palestinians.
The Palestinian-Israeli conflict dates to the period immediately following the end of the Second World War, when Jews (both in Palestine and in other parts of the world) began pressing strongly for the creation of a Jewish state. In the background of such agitation was the German/Nazi record throughout Europe between 1932 and 1945. Hilberg's authoritativ...