The interpretative moment of European journalism: the impact of newspaper opinion making in the ratification process

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Series Details No. 11, November 2007
Publication Date November 2007
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This study investigates the role of political journalism in EU constitution-making. More specifically, we ask whether political journalists take an active role in shaping public preferences and opinion on European integration. An analytical framework is developed distinguishing between the critical and the representative function of media opinion-making. Journalists are found to interfere with the democratization of the EU either as a critical watchdog controlling and advising political decision-makers, or as a collective voice representing long-term expectations and public dispositions in the debate. This research framework is applied to the analysis of newspaper commentaries in the ratification period of the EU Constitutional Treaty (November 2004 to June 2005). The ratification process is analyzed as a critical juncture of European integration in which enhanced debates and politicization are expected in all member states

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