Remaking Media in the Pursuit of Justice

Rethinking journalism requires questioning pillars of conventional journalismRethinking media requires questioning pillars of conventional journalism. (Image: Jared Rodriguez / Truthout)

Charles Derber offers a guide to the new era of organizing in Welcome to the Revolution: Universalizing Resistance for Social Justice and Democracy in Perilous Times. With guest contributions from Medea Benjamin, Ralph Nader, Gar Alperovitz and more, this book makes a compelling argument about how movements must come together. Order your copy today with a donation to Truthout!

Do media outlets have a role to play in the movement for a better world? In this excerpt from Welcome to the Revolution that forms one of the book’s “interludes,” Truthout’s Alana Yu-lan Price and Maya Schenwar argue that they can, if we are willing to transform journalism as we know it.

As editors of Truthout, an independent online news site, we believe that good journalism plays a role in the pursuit of justice.

The forms of injustice that we are up against — mass incarceration, white supremacy, widening economic inequality, and a militarized form of global capitalism that disproportionately affects people of color and women worldwide — all rely on silence and erasure.

Part of what journalists can do to counter these systems of injustice is to expose specific instances of injustice and tell stories of resistance, providing a platform for people who are experiencing and organizing against oppression to tell their stories. When we do this, we transform journalism into a form of justice through storytelling.

Rethinking journalism requires questioning pillars of conventional journalism, such as the idea that a journalist can be “objective.” We question whether it is possible to construct a narrative without unconsciously shaping a story through one’s “common sense” about whom to interview, what order to tell the story in, what context should be deemed necessary for inclusion and more. Fantasies of objectivity erode journalists’ ability to think critically about how their own values, experiences,…

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