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NEW JOURNALISM OR OLD COMEDY: DIVERSITY AND THE BLURRING BOUNDARIES BETWEEN JOURNALISM AND HUMOUR
Minelle Mahtani, Geography and Planning, Journalism, University of Toronto; Senior Fellow, Massey College
Coach House, Green College
January 25 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

The uneasy intersection between journalism, comedy and race has been hotly debated among cultural critics and political pundits. The use of racial jokes in news parody and political satire can open up dimensions of freedom and transparency that can be absent from the narrow frames of journalistic discourse framing moral and political debates. However, while it can set the stage for subversion and democratic engagement, it can also reinforce disturbing racial and ethnic stereotypes. In this brief talk, Minelle Mahtani will explore this complex tension through an analysis of “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” paying particular attention to the way the show demonstrates an ambivalent anti-racism. Dr. Mahtani will trace this ambivalence through an analysis of a clip from the show, and accompanying interviews conducted with webmasters who run the site “Love, InShAllah” and “Fake News Junkies” to show that the programme can invigorate an oppositional movement to dominant media practices of misrepresentation.

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