Front Page Economics

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2010-12-15
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
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In an age when pundits constantly decry overt political bias in the media, we have naturally become skeptical of the news. But the bluntness of such critiques masks the highly sophisticated ways in which the media frame important stories. InFront Page Economics, Gerald Suttles delves deep into the archives to examine coverage of two major economic crashesin 1929 and 1987in order to systematically break down the way newspapers normalize crises. Poring over the articles generated by the crashesas well as the people in them, the writers who wrote them, and the cartoons that ran alongside themSuttles uncovers dramatic changes between the ways the first and second crashes were reported. In the intervening half-century, an entire new economic language had arisen and the practice of business journalism had been completely altered. Both of these transformations, Suttles demonstrates, allowed journalists to describe the 1987 crash in a vocabulary that was normal and familiar to readers, rendering it routine. A subtle and probing look at how ideologies are packaged and transmitted to the casual newspaper reader,Front Page Economicsbrims with important insights that shed light on our own economically tumultuous times.

Author Biography

Gerald Suttles is professor emeritus of sociology at the University of Chicago and adjunct professor of sociology at Indiana University.


Mark Jacobs is associate professor of sociology at George Mason University

Table of Contents

Forewordp. vii
Acknowledgmentsp. xvii
The Social Construction of the Economy: 1929 and 1987
The Daily Press and Our Collective Consciencep. 3
The Grounding of the Economyp. 16
The Daily Dramatism of Economic News
The News as Figurative Narrativesp. 45
Personae and Their Purposesp. 72
Wordscapes and Toonlandp. 88
The Telling or the Great Crashes
The Annual Business Cycle and Its Promotersp. 115
The Voice of the Peoplep. 136
Congress and the Courts Have Their Sayp. 153
The Transformation of Ideology
Normalizing the Economy: Popular Ideology and Social Regulationp. 187
Methodological Appendixp. 197
Notesp. 211
Works Citedp. 229
Indexp. 241
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