Post apartheid challenges according to South African journalists : A qualitative study of how South African journalists evaluate the relationship between their ethnicity and work

Detta är en Kandidat-uppsats från Linnéuniversitetet/Institutionen för medier och journalistik (MJ)

Sammanfattning: This study is a bachelor's thesis based on a Minor Field Study conducted in Cape Town,South Africa between October and December 2022. This research is a qualitative studyand nine semi-structured interviews were conducted with South African journalistsduring the field study. The aim of the study is to investigate how journalists' assess therelationship between their ethnicity and work in post apartheid South Africa. Further,how they experience the relationship between their ethnicity and their opportunity tosucceed in their workplace. And how they, based on their ethnicity, evaluate that theyare affected by culture, historical aspects and editorial decisions, when it comes to theirwork duties and their own view of their work identity. The collected data from the interviews were analyzed with a thematic analysis where theresult shows three themes. The themes that are presented are: The impact of ethnicity onthe field, The impact of ethnicity in the newsroom and Professional identity and beats.Postcolonial theory and the creation of professional identity has been applied to helpinvestigate the result of the research and support its findings. In addition, previousresearch about the South African media industry and background about apartheidsociety has been used partly to help understand the context of the research and tosupport the results. The study concludes that South African journalists' ethnicity has an impact on theiremployment in terms of what opportunities they are given in the newsroom and in theirwork when being out on the field. The interviewees evaluate that journalists of colorhave a harder time getting promotions and have to work harder because of theirethnicity. However, the thesis also concludes that journalists of color evaluate theirethnicity as an asset in terms of gaining trust with interviewees. Also, they reason thatwhite journalists in comparison are met with more skepticism by the public.Furthermore, the study concludes that journalists of color can be assigned to do storiesbased on their skin color or cultural background, which the interviewees in this studyevaluated as something that limited them in their work. It limited them because theyreasoned that being assigned a topic to report on based on skin color or culturalbackground reduces their freedom of having autonomy of their own work, which alsoaffects their professional identity. 

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