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Media Scholar Donald L. Shaw to Present Lecture at Utah State University

Monday, Apr. 21, 2014

April 21, 2014

Source: USU JCOM department

Contact: Tom Terry, (435) 797-3002,

Media Scholar Donald L. Shaw to Present Lecture at Utah State University The Morris Media Lecture is April 23

                LOGAN — Donald L. Shaw from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill will deliver one of the periodic Morris Media Lectures Wednesday, April 23, at 11:30 a.m. in the auditorium on the first floor of the Agricultural Sciences Building at the Logan campus. The lectures are sponsored by the Department of Journalism and Communication through an endowment honoring former journalism professor John Morris.

                The title of his speech is “Finding Public Identity: How We Use Media to Locate Civil Life and Create Private Communities.”

                Shaw is the Kenan Professor Emeritus in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

                Along with his colleague Maxwell McCombs (University of Texas-Austin), he developed the agenda setting theory of the mass media in a 1972 “Public Opinion Quarterly” article that is the most cited in mass communication literature and has been in the top 10 for 42 years straight. The theory, boiled down, is that the power of the media is in establishing the playing field for public debate. Media are not powerful in telling people what to think, but enormously powerful telling people what to think about.

                Shaw has won lifetime achievement awards from the leading mass communication academic organizations in the United States and overseas, but also from the American Political Science Association, because his work and impact is truly interdisciplinary. He is also a media historian and his work in newspaper archives has helped establish newspapers as a legitimate, primary resource for scholars.

                In addition, he is a retired Army Colonel in the National Guard and Reserves and a former Army ROTC officer (University of Wisconsin). He served on active duty at the Pentagon during the first Gulf War. He served nearly half a century before completely retiring several years ago. For more than a decade, Shaw was director of the Selective Service for North Carolina.

                In 1999, Shaw was selected as one of the top 50 teachers of journalism of the 20th Century.

                Everyone is invited to attend an hour-long lecture (with Q&A) with one of the giant scholars in the field of mass communication and journalism.


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