alexa Framing: Toward clarification of a fractured paradigm
Social & Political Sciences

Social & Political Sciences

Journal of Mass Communication & Journalism

Author(s): Robert M Entman

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In response to the proposition that conununication lacks disciplinary sta-tus because of deficient core knowledge. 1 propose that we turn an osten-sible weakness into a strength. We should identify our mission as bring-ing together insights and theories that would otherwise remain scattered in other disciplines. Because of the hick of interchange innong the disci-plines, hypotheses thoroughly discredited in one field may receive wide acceptance in another. Potential research paradigms remain fractured: with pieces here and there but no comprehensive statement to guide re-search. By bringing ideas together in one location, communication can aspire to become a master discipline that synthesizes related theories and concepts and exposes them to the most rigorous, comprehensive state ment and exploration. Reaching this goal would require a inure self-con-scious determination by communication scholars to plumb other fields and feed back their studies to outside researchers. At the .same dine: such an enterprise would enhance the theoretical rigor of communication scholarsltiji proper. The idea of "framing" offers a case study of just the kind of scattered conceptualization T have identified. Despite its omnipresence across the social sciences and humanities: nowhere is there a general statement of framing theory that shows exactly how frames become embedded within and make themselves manifest in a Lela; or how framing influences think-ing. Analysis of this concept suggests how the discipline of communica-tion might contribute something unique: synthesizing a key concept's dis-parate uses, showing how they invariably involve communication, and constructing a coherent theory from them. \whatever its specific use, the concept of framing consistently offers a way to describe the power of a coixununicating text.

This article was published in Journal of Communication and referenced in Journal of Mass Communication & Journalism

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