Media use, democratic citizenship, and communication gaps in a developing democracy

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30 Scopus citations

Abstract

In contrast to most previous scholarship that has examined political communication gaps within developed polities, this study examines the role of such gaps in a developing democracy with high levels of social stratification. Employing the 2001 Afrobarometer survey conducted in Mali, this study examined the association between forms of media use (radio, newspaper, and television) and individual political knowledge, participation, and socialization. The analysis demonstrates a pattern of political communication gaps where media use is associated with a widening of gaps in political knowledge and participation favoring socially privileged groups. Conversely, media use is associated with a narrowing of gaps in democratic socialization between social groups. These findings have implications for understanding the institutional and systemic role of the mass media in developing democracies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)454-482
Number of pages29
JournalInternational Journal of Public Opinion Research
Volume20
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

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