30. Name: Aaron Davidowitz Title: The Evolution of Media in the Arab World: A Study of Al Jazeera and Al Jazeera English Institution: Union College Country: United States Date: 2008 Language: English Abstract: Echoing the political environment of the region, media in the Arab world has historically operated as a top-down, state-run apparatus. Print, radio and television have been predominantly influenced, or directly controlled by governments and state bureaucracies. As a result, the people in the Arab world have been deprived of free press, open debates and different opinions. With the introduction of satellite television, and particularly with the creation and rising popularity of Al Jazeera satellite channel, Arab masses throughout the Middle East have been inundated with a multitude of issues and voices never before observed by their national media. This thesis looks at the progression of media in the Arab world and the changes that have taken place since the emergence of satellite television. It provides a critical analysis of existing research on Al Jazeera and compares it to an independent research analysis of Al Jazeera English, launched in 2006. This analysis investigates the differences and similarities between the two channels in order to discern potential media biases inherent within coverage and understand the larger impact each channel may have on the international community.
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