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News from America: Reporting on the United States in Sweden

News from America occupies a prominent place in Swedish media. For decades, political, cultural, and social developments in the U.S. have been closely followed in Sweden. This interest has grown even more intense in recent years.

On October 13, 2018, the Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center at Augustana College will host a panel discussion looking at how foreign journalists report on news from the United States, using Sweden as an example.

Foreign news media have a long tradition of stationing correspondents in America. These reporters play an essential role in shaping their readers’ perception of America. In the past, Swedish newspapers, radio, and television were the main source of information about the U.S. in Sweden. But today, the internet provides Swedes with easy access to American media. How does this abundance of American news affect the work of journalists? Is there a greater need for context when so much information is readily available? How well informed is the public in the respective countries?

Participants will include Augustana Provost Wendy-Hilton Morrow, Swedish journalists Karin Henriksson and Martin Gelin, and the moderator, Dr. Jonas Björk, professor of journalism and public relations at Indiana University in Indianapolis.

The event will be held in Wallenberg Hall in Augustana's Denkmann Building (3520 7th Ave) and will run from 2 p.m. until about 4:30 p.m. with a coffee break from 3-3:15.

Support for this event provided by the Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center and Scandinavian Studies program at Augustana College, through a grant from the Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation.

Event information

Karin Henriksson

Panelists

Karin Henriksson is a Swedish journalist and author who wrote for Svenska DagbladetShe has written several books which focus on American politics including Reagan: En kontroversiell ikon (2015) the first biography of President Ronald Reagan in Swedish, Vi, folket...: Förenta Staternas författning (2015) a translation of the United States Constitution, and TRUMP—miljarderna, medierna och makten (2017) which looks at President Trump’s path to power. Henriksson has been reporting from Washington DC since 1987. She has written for a variety of outlets including Borås Tidning, Corren, Smålandsposten, and Upsala Nya TidningShe also contributes to the blog Amerikaanalys.se, published jointly by Uppsala University and Halmstad University.

Martin Gelin

Martin Gelin is a Swedish journalist and author who writes for Dagens Nyheter. He has lived in New York since 2001. He has written several books on American politics including Det amerikanska löftet: Barack Obamas väg till Vita Huset (Atlas, 2009) the first Swedish book on Barack Obama, and Den amerikanska högern: Republikanernas revolution och USA:s framtid (Natur & Kultur, 2012) an award-nominated book on the Republican revolution in America. Gelin has also contributed to Svenska Dagbladet, Aftonbladet, Göteborgs Posten, and Expressen. He has commented on U.S. policy for Swedish radio and TV, BBC, CNN, and Slate. He also blogs about American politics for Dagens Nyheter and the Foreign Policy Institute. 

Dr. Wendy Hilton-Morrow

Dr. Wendy Hilton-Morrow is the Vice President of Academic Affairs, Provost and Dean of Augustana College. She is also an Associate Professor in the Communication Studies department. Her teaching and research interests include gender, sexuality and the media, media history, and local television news. Her textbook (with Kathleen Battles) Sexual Identities and the Media: An Introduction (Routledge, 2015) introduces students to key debates in this important contemporary issue. Her co-edited collection War of the Worlds to Social Media: Mediated Communication in Times of Crisis (Peter Lang, 2013) marked the 75th anniversary of the original War of the Worlds radio broadcast, contemplating its relevance for our understanding of contemporary media crises. Dr. Hilton-Morrow is a former award-winning television journalist for WQAD-TV and newswritter for WVIK public radio.

Dr. Ulf Jonas Björk

Moderator

Dr. Ulf Jonas Björk is a Professor of Journalism and Public Relations at Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis. His research interests include the immigrant press in the United States, presence of U.S. mass media in Europe, and history of foreign correspondence in the American press. Björk has written several books on these subjects including the co-authored A History of the International Movement of Journalists: Professionalism versus Politics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) with Nordenstreng, et al., and Det blågula stjärnbaneret: USA:s närvaro och inflytande i Sverige [The Blue and Yellow Star-Spangled Banner: The Presence and Influence of the United States in Sweden] (Carlssons, 2016) with Dag Blanck and others. In spring 2012, Björk was the Fulbright Uppsala Distinguished Chair in American Studies at Uppsala University in Sweden.

Contact:

Jill Seaholm, 309-794-7204

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