Title page for ETD etd-05152010-093130

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author DeLauder, Rachel Cathleen
Author's Email Address rdelaude@vt.edu
URN etd-05152010-093130
Title Unburdened by Objectivity: Political Entertainment News in the 2008 Presidential Campaign
Degree Master of Arts
Department Communication Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Tedesco, John C. Committee Chair
Holloway, Rachel L. Committee Member
Waggenspack, Beth M. Committee Member
  • news
  • entertainment media
  • Daily Show
  • Colbert Report
  • Jon Stewart
Date of Defense 2010-05-03
Availability unrestricted
This study analyzes 2008 presidential election coverage on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report to determine how they confront the tension between the genres of news and entertainment. To this point, much of the scholarly work on political entertainment news has focused on examining its effects on viewers’ political attitudes and knowledge. A rhetorical analysis reveals the actual messages they convey and the strategies they employ to discuss contemporary American politics. Through comedic devices such as satire and parody, The Daily Show and The Colbert Report offer a venue for social commentary and criticisms of power at a time when traditional venues are dissipating, and these shows provide a place for serious political discourse that encourages dialogue that promotes civic engagement.
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