Media stars and neoliberal news agendas in Indigenous policymaking


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    Our essay uses a media studies lens to examine the ascendancy of neoliberal policy agendas in Indigenous affairs. The Media and Indigenous Policy project1 has been investigating the dynamic interplay between news media and the complex, politically sensitive and uneven bureaucratic field of Indigenous affairs. A particular focus has been to investigate the news media’s power to construct problems and suggest solutions in the Indigenous policy field. This essay draws on that research to argue that conservative news outlets have sponsored a narrow range of Indigenous voices to articulate and promote neoliberal policy agendas to government. We examine how The Australian newspaper, as the keystone media on Indigenous affairs, was integral to the rise of Noel Pearson as the singular influence on Indigenous affairs. In doing so, we acknowledge and pay tribute to the thinking of Jon Altman in the development of our ideas, and for his support throughout this project.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEngaging indigenous economy : debating diverse approaches
    EditorsWilliam Sanders
    Place of PublicationCanberra
    PublisherANU E Press
    Number of pages12
    ISBN (Print)9781760460037
    Publication statusPublished - 2016


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