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The Elites of the Media versus the Elites of Politics in Poland

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Edited By Zbigniew Oniszczuk, Dagmara Głuszek-Szafraniec and Mirosława Wielopolska-Szymura

This book is the fruit of scientific research conducted using quantitative and qualitative methods regarding the mutual relations between the media elites and the political elites in Poland. The authors of this work focus on several virtuous aspects of this issue: on the characteristic model of opinion-forming journalism, also on the differences presented by female and male journalists in the assessment of the relations between politicians and journalists, as well as on the differences between local and national level of mass media in terms of external and internal autonomy of journalists, next on the importance of opinion-forming media in the process of creating a sense of political subjectivity in their recipients, and finally on the phenomenon of politicization of cultural issues in opinion-forming weeklies in Poland.

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1. Theoretical and Practical Aspects of Relations Between Elites in the Mass Media and Politics

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Zbigniew Oniszczuk

1.   Theoretical and Practical Aspects of Relations Between Elites in the Mass Media and Politics

Abstract The connections between elites who derive from the sphere of mass media and politics constitute an important area of contemporary relations between the political system and the media system from the perspective of both the democratic state and society. The chapter attempts to outline the theoretical and practical aspects of these interdependencies. Therefore, it defines the notion of media, journalistic, and political elites, and at the same time presents the state of research on the level of these elites’ awareness regarding their mutual relations in Poland and Germany. In the conclusion, the author formulates research questions which are of key importance for determining the state and nature of dependencies among the considered elites.

Keywords: Media elites, journalistic elites, political elites, interdependencies, political parallelism

1.1 Theoretical dimension of the relations between political elites and media elites

For the functioning of the media system in each country, the relations between political elites and elites deriving from the sphere of mass media are of utmost importance.1 In world literature, Jay Blumler and Michael Gurevitch pointed to the significance of this phenomenon in 1995, analyzing different dimensions of the issue in reference to democratic countries and emphasizing the importance of formal and informal interrelations as well as the existence of a specific culture of mutual communication between politicians and journalists (Blumler and Gurevitch, 1995: 66–67)...

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