Matt J. Duffy :: Thoughts on Journalism, Culture, and Global Communication

Thoughts On Journalism, Culture, and Global Communication
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About the author

Dr. Matt J. Duffy serves as an assistant professor in the School of Communication and Media at Kennesaw State University in Georgia, USA. He enjoys teaching the art of good journalism, a noble profession and powerful tool for social change. Duffy worked as a journalist for several news outlets including the Boston Herald and the Marietta Daily Journal. He now teaches journalism and media law.
Duffy's research focuses on international approaches to media law. Wolters Kluwer will publish the second edition of his"Media Laws in the United Arab Emirates" in 2016. He has published more than a dozen academic articles and writes occasionally for niche publications. Duffy enjoyed a visit to Pakistan in May 2016 as part of the Fulbright Scholar program from the US State Department. Since 2012, Duffy has served on the board of the Arab-United States Association for Communication Educators, an organization that aims to improve journalism in the Middle East. He also owns Oxford Editing that he started in 2007.

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On the occasional need for polemic writing

posted on April 24, 2012 at 9:52 pm

I’ve always remembered a quote from Flannery O’Connor, the great author from the American South. O’Connor wrote interesting tales fused with themes of ethics and morality. Her characters often struggled with prickly issues of the Civil Rights era like prejudice, racism and the waning influence of religion. Often, her stories would take a dramatic twist at the end that would shock her audiences. In the short story “A Good Man is Hard to Find,” for instance, a genteel family on a road trip are murdered by nihilist criminals on the final page.

Her quote occurs to me whenever I read or see anything that people respond to with shock and disbelief. She told an interviewer once:

When you can assume that your audience holds the same beliefs you do, you can relax a little and use more normal ways of talking to it; when you have to assume that it does not, then you have to make your vision apparent by shock — to the hard of hearing you shout, and for the almost blind you draw large and startling figures.

I thought of her words again today when I read Mona Eltahawy’s article “Why do they hate us?” which details her perception of the mass mistreatment of Arab women.

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