128. Name: Mohamed Nacer Bedri Title: Al Jazeera between Serving Qatar, an A advocate of Arabism and Political Islam or Democratic Values: An Examination of Scholarly Works on Three Models in Contention Institution: University of Cardiff Country: United Kingdom Date: 2015 Language: English Abstract: This study evaluates scholarly works on the journalistic and political nature of Al Jazeera. The research is divided into two parts: the first analyzes the main models identified by academic works on Al Jazeera, and the second examines whether the concept of ‘model’, as understood in social sciences, applies to Al Jazeera’s programmes. The first model presents the channel as an ideological force promoting Arabism and political Islam. The second model depicts Al Jazeera as force for sociopolitical change, promoting the values of freedom, democracy, and human rights. This model stresses the professional aspects of the channel such as objectivity and balanced reporting. The third model portrays Al Jazeera as propaganda agent, serving Qatar’s interests and policies. The research concludes that there is a great deal of overlap between the scholarly works examined, and that Al Jazeera’s primary purpose is to serve the strategic objectives of the state of Qatar. The findings also revealed a great deal of agreement among scholars that Al Jazeera provides a distinct media discourse that, if considered in its entirety, could qualify as a new Arab media model.
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