A quarter century of creative chaos: Xinhua News Agency 1980-2005

Xin, X. 2006. A quarter century of creative chaos: Xinhua News Agency 1980-2005. PhD thesis University of Westminster School of Media, Arts and Design

TitleA quarter century of creative chaos: Xinhua News Agency 1980-2005
TypePhD thesis
AuthorsXin, X.
Abstract

Chinese media in the context of China's rise have puzzled many scholars who used to

understand media and communications phenomena by employing the theories generated

from a few affluent Western democracies, notably the US. As a result, a complex but more

accurate picture has been ignored. Under numerous theoretical polarizations, the

contemporary social world seems little changed but polarized. This thesis aims to propose

a different approach endeavoring to 'de-Westernize' or 'internationalize' media and

communications studies. As a starting point, this study focuses on the globalization debate,

Chinese media and news agency studies.

The thesis has investigated the Chinese news agency, Xinhua, by employing Fuzzy Logic

which captures the complexity of the change in the agency's business structure and

journalistic practices over last 25 years. The change is also examined by scrutinizing the

role of journalists in the interrelations of Xinhua with its news sources, media and nonmedia

clients, and other news agencies. A combination of archive study and 94 semistructured interviews conducted in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Macau and

London provides an inclusive account of the Chinese news institution.

The key research findings drawn from the empirical research into Xinhua have justified the

central argument of this thesis: Crisp Logic or the 'either/or' approach has failed to explain

the dynamics of the change to the media system based in a 'non-Western' society. The

numerous theoretical polarizations generated by Crisp Logic to a large extent have

distorted the understanding of the contemporary social world by polarizing it. Fuzzy Logic

serves better(though it is not the only choice)than the traditional approach to reflect on the

set of variables existing between the two poles created by Crisp Logic.

This thesis is the first doctorate research in the UK and other English-speaking countries to

investigate Xinhua by 'going inside' the news institution's headquarters, local branches

and overseas bureaus. This is the first comprehensive academic study of the agency, which

not only examines the agency's recent change in business structure and journalistic

practices, but also provides a historical account of the agency and its relationship with

other social institutions. This is the first media study that employs Fuzzy Logic to

understand the globalization theory, Chinese media and news agencies.

Year2006
Publication dates
Completed2006

Related outputs

Popularizing Party Journalism in China in the Age of Social Media: The Case of Xinhua News Agency
Xin, X. 2018. Popularizing Party Journalism in China in the Age of Social Media: The Case of Xinhua News Agency. Global Media and China. 3 (1), pp. 3-17.

How will cultural relations between China and Europe develop?
Xin, X. 2018. How will cultural relations between China and Europe develop? in: Culture Report EUNIC Yearbook 2017/2018, "Cultures of We": How Culture can play a Role for Europe inside and outside Göttingen, Germany Steidl Verlag.

Financialisation of News in China in the Age of the Internet: The Case of Xinhuanet
Xin, X. 2017. Financialisation of News in China in the Age of the Internet: The Case of Xinhuanet. Media, Culture and Society.

How the market is changing China's news: the case of Xinhua news agency
Xin, X. 2012. How the market is changing China's news: the case of Xinhua news agency. Lanham, US Lexington Books.

Web 2.0, grassroots journalism and social justice in China
Xin, X. 2011. Web 2.0, grassroots journalism and social justice in China. in: Meikle, G. and Redden, G. (ed.) News online: transformation and continuity New York Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 178-194

Chindia’s challenge to global communication: a perspective from China
Xin, X. 2010. Chindia’s challenge to global communication: a perspective from China. Global Media and Communication. 6 (3), pp. 296-301.

Public diplomacy games: a comparative study of American and Japanese responses to the interplay of nationalism, ideology and Chinese soft power strategies around the 2008 Beijing Olympics
Xin, X. and Finlay, C.J. 2010. Public diplomacy games: a comparative study of American and Japanese responses to the interplay of nationalism, ideology and Chinese soft power strategies around the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Sport in Society: Cultures, Commerce, Media, Politics. 13 (5), pp. 876-900.

The impact of "citizen journalism" on Chinese media and society
Xin, X. 2010. The impact of "citizen journalism" on Chinese media and society. Journalism Practice. 4 (3), pp. 333-344.

Xinhua News Agency in the context of the 'crisis' of news agencies
Xin, X. 2010. Xinhua News Agency in the context of the 'crisis' of news agencies. in: Boyd-Barrett, O. (ed.) News agencies in the turbulent era of the Internet Barcelona Generalitat de Catalunya. pp. 283-303

Xinhua News Agency in Africa
Xin, X. 2009. Xinhua News Agency in Africa. Journal of African Media Studies. 1 (3), pp. 363-377.

Structural Change journalism practice: Xinhua News Agency in the early 2000s
Xin, X. 2008. Structural Change journalism practice: Xinhua News Agency in the early 2000s. Journalism Practice. 2 (1), pp. 46-63.

Research into Chinese media organisations. The case of Xinhua Shanghai bureau
Xin, X. 2008. Research into Chinese media organisations. The case of Xinhua Shanghai bureau. Javnost / The Public. 15 (1), pp. 39-56.

Xinhua news agency and globalization: negotiating between the global, the local and the national
Xin, X. 2007. Xinhua news agency and globalization: negotiating between the global, the local and the national. in: Boyd-Barrett, O. (ed.) Communications media, globalization, and empire Eastleigh, UK John Libbey & Company. pp. 111-128

How to do fieldwork?
Xin, X. 2007. How to do fieldwork? in: Carpentier, N., Pruulmann-Vengerfeldt, P., Nordenstreng, K., Hartmann, M., Vihalemm, P., Cammaerts, B. and Nieminen, H. (ed.) Media technologies and democracy in an enlarged Europe Tartu University of Tartu Press. pp. 295-306

News probe: what does it tell us about Chinese journalism today?
de Burgh, H. and Xin, X. 2006. News probe: what does it tell us about Chinese journalism today? Medien Journal. 30 (2-3), pp. 52-66.

A developing market in news: Xinhua News Agency and Chinese newspapers
Xin, X. 2006. A developing market in news: Xinhua News Agency and Chinese newspapers. Media, Culture & Society. 28 (1), pp. 45-66.

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