Mediating Asia| Pressing the Issue: Sino-American Discourse on the Proper Role of the Media, Past and Present

Timothy B. Weston


Sino-American discourse on the nature of the press as a social institution is a historical subject in addition to one for our times. This article locates today’s Sino-American discourse on the role of the media in a broad historical context before observing the degree to which the globalization of media technologies has complicated what for a century was typically a confrontational discourse between the two countries over the appropriate role of the press in society. It reveals that China and the United States sparred over that question from the early 20th century forward and that each country has served as a foil for the other insofar as attitudes about the media, as well as media practices, have been articulated and justified.


Sino-American press relations, journalism, globalization, mainstream media, alternate media, digital communications, international relations

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