‘The First World War as Media Event: the Netherlands and Belgium'. Special Issue Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis. Call for proposals/papers.
Netherlands and Belgium’
Call for Papers Date:
‘The First World War as Media Event: the Netherlands and Belgium’
Call for papers: Special Issue Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis
The First World War was a formidable media event. The aim of this special issue is to chart the media landscape during the war and investigate how it transformed during and after the war. These questions are approached from a comparative perspective focusing on occupied Belgium and its neutral neighbor, the Netherlands.
The war infused a strong demand for news and images, also in the neutral Netherlands. At the same time the censorship in the European countries that were at war made reliable information scarce. The belligerent nations and their allies fought a propaganda war, in which they also tried to win the favor of the public of the neutral countries. For that reason the formerly neutral press agencies, such as Havas, Reuters and Wolff. Journalists were thrown back on their own original coverage of the news. This gave an impulse to the development of modern reporting. In the Netherlands, De Telegraaf successfully attracted readers by adopting an personal-emotional way of reporting, which deviated from the neutral-detached style that was dominant in this period. Illustrated magazines, such as Panorama en Het Leven anticipated the curiosity of the public and saw their circulation grow rapidly by publishing (photographic) images of the war. Moving images also became increasingly popular: the cinema appealed to a growing audience and the Dutch movie industry blossomed.
Obviously, the war impacted the media landscape in Belgium. The German occupation, lasting over four years, enforced severe restrictions that caused upheaval in the media industries. Strict censorship by the occupying powers made several dailies decide to cease publication. The thirst for news was for a large part lavished by emerging clandestine papers that created a parallel underground news network. The war resulted in new genres, like ‘trenchpapers’ that were created throughout the entire front and thus also in Belgium. Cinema was also largely controlled by the Germans, which brought the national movie business to a standstill. Furthermore, movies from the allied countries were banned and replaced with German, Hungarian and Scandanavian productions.
How did the war impact the production, distribution and consumption of media in the Low Countries? How did it transform the relationships between entrepeneurs, producers, audiences, government organizations, and other stakeholders? Which new genres and styles developed? What cross-border traffic occurred literally and figuratively between the Netherlands and Belgium with regard to media production or consumption? Can we distinguish continuities in a period that is so strongly associated with discontinuity? Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis is interested in contributions on any medium or genre (besides written journalism and film, mentioned above, also theater, photography, literature, or for instance cartoons). Both contributions on the war period itself are welcome, as well as articles on impact in later years. We prefer a comparative perspective on Belgium and the Netherlands, but the editors also invite authors who write about one of the two countries exclusively.
For this special issue, we are particularly looking for articles that focus from a comparative perspective on the following themes from this list (not exhaustive):
- The impact of the First World War on journalism in various media
- The emergence of a visual culture under the influence of the First World War - The way the First World War is represented in different media - Discussions about journalism, film, theater or other media within the context of the First World War. - The relationship between news and entertainment during the First World War - The influence of propaganda on the media system during the First World War - Economic aspects of media industries during the First World War - The effect of the First World War in the post-war media landscape - The place and role of media in the memory culture surrounding the First World War - The interaction between technological innovation and stylistic innovation in media production and consumption during the First World War - Surprise us !
Proposals for articles (approximately 300 words) may be submitted to the editor via Thunnis Oort (T.vanOort@uu.nl) no later than May 1 2014. A final version of the article is expected by September 1. The issue appears at the end of December 2014.
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