Chapter

Eyewitnesses and ‘I’ Witnesses – Journalists in Spain

David Deacon

in British News Media and the Spanish Civil War

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780748627486
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651368 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748627486.003.0003
Eyewitnesses and ‘I’ Witnesses – Journalists in Spain

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This chapter describes the attitudes, actions, and experiences of the foreign correspondents that covered the war directly. It starts by exploring the configuration of the news net in Spain during the conflict. The news net that was quickly improvised to cover the Spanish Civil War was an amalgamation of freelancers, stringers, special correspondents, and staff reporters. Journalists often struggle to determine where their professional obligations end and their patriotic duties begin. The greatest tensions between professionalism and propaganda in war reporting tend to occur in those conflicts where serious national interests are at stake but not matters of national survival. Furthermore, the dichotomy is explained to distinguish between journalists who acted as ‘propagandists’, ‘partisans’, ‘sympathisers’, and ‘agnostics’ in the Spanish war. The Spanish Civil War generated some magnificent coverage, written by some iconic figures, but there were also structural failings.

Keywords: foreign correspondents; Spanish Civil War; Spain; professionalism; propaganda; partisans; sympathisers; agnostics

Chapter.  10382 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Media Studies

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