Why Journalism History Matters: Our Essay Series

Across the past few years, American Journalism has published a series of essays united by the theme “Why Journalism History Matters.” In these essays, respected scholars in our field have encouraged our community to consider how journalism and media history matter not only to the wider field of history but also to communication, journalism studies, sociology, and various other fields. Why should our work matter to others? What might we see, or see differently, when we engage in cross-disciplinary dialogue? How can theoretical perspectives from disciplines beyond mass communication illuminate our historical studies in fresh and productive ways?

We invite you to read, re-read, think about, and teach these essays. And we hope the conversation will continue beyond the journal’s pages.

Andie Tucher, “Why Journalism History Matters: The Gaffe, the “Stuff,” and the Historical Imagination”
American Journalism 31, no. 4 (Fall 2014): 432-444

Amy Aronson, “Everything Old Is New Again: How the ‘New’ User-Generated Women’s Magazine Takes Us Back to the Future”
American Journalism 31, no. 3 (Summer 2014): 312-28 

Kristin L. Gustafson, “Translation, Technology, and the Digital Archive: Preserving a Historic Japanese-Language Newspaper”
American Journalism 31, no. 1 (Winter 2014): 4-25

Victoria Smith Ekstrand, “The Presentist Media Landscape and the Practice of Doing History”
American Journalism 30, no. 4 (Fall 2013): 441-449

Giovanna Dell’Orto, “Go Big or Stay Home: Why Journalism Historians Matter to
Understanding International Affairs”
American Journalism 30, no. 3 (Summer 2013): 301-307

Amber Roessner, Rick Popp, Brian Creech, & Fred Blevens, “‘A Measure of Theory?’:
Considering the Role of Theory in Media History”
American Journalism 30, no. 2 (Spring 2013): 260-278

Special Section: Theorizing Journalism in Time
American Journalism 30, no. 1 (Winter 2013): 3-43

Kathy Roberts Forde, “Introduction,” 3
Rodney Benson, “On the Explanatory and Political Uses of Journalism History,” 4-14
John Nerone, “Why Journalism History Matters to Journalism Studies,” 15-28
Michael Schudson, “Fourteen or Fifteen Generations: News as a Cultural Form and Journalism as a Historical Formation,” 29-3
Tim P. Vos, “Historical Mechanisms and Journalistic Change,” 36-43

John Nerone, “Does Journalism History Matter?”
American Journalism 28, no. 4 (Fall 2011): 7-27