New Book Focuses On Religion And The Media

Jan. 14, 2005

by Julie Campbell Carlson

Baylor University Press will release next week a new book that explores the relationship between religion and the news media. Quoting God: How Media Shapes Ideas about Religion and Culture, edited by Claire Hoertz Badaracco, charts the many ways in which media reports religion news, how media uses the quoted word to describe lived faith, and how media itself influences--and is influenced by--religion in the public square.

Through a series of essays, the book brings together the work of academics, who study religion, and the work of professional journalists, who regularly report on religion in an age of instant and competitive news. Quoting God can serve as a valuable resource for journalists and scholars.

"There is rarely any news today, whether national or international, that is not freighted with a religious component or a religious underpinning. The scholars and journalists in this volume know the importance religion plays in almost every dimension of life," said Michael Cromartie of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C.

"Of the many significant contributions the book makes, one of the most important is to remind us that religion intersects with almost every conceivable journalistic 'beat,'" said Melissa Rogers, visiting professor of religion and public policy at Wake Forest University Divinity School. "The book illustrates the kind of fresh and informative stories that can result when journalists recognize these intersections. "

Claire Hoertz Badaracco, who received her doctorate from Rutgers, is professor in the College of Communication at Marquette University. She is the author of Trading Words: Poetry, Typography, and Illustrated Books in the Modern Literary Economy and American Culture and the Marketplace.

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