Title

Lügenpresse: Media skepticism in contemporary Germany

Presenter Information

Ian Strahn

Presentation Type

Presentation

Abstract

In what is sometimes referred to as the post-truth era, the performance of the news media in conveying accurate information is under increased scrutiny. Media skepticism is on the rise in many democratic countries, and in German-speaking regions, this phenomenon coalesces around the term Lügenpresse, meaning lying press. Coined more than a century ago, the term today is closely tied to the Syrian refugee crisis and a surge of right-wing populism. Through research based on a series of in-depth interviews conducted in Berlin, as well as a review of news articles and media criticism literature, I will examine how the term Lügenpresse, has been used in the past, and why its resurgence is significant in Germany today. A hermeneutic analysis of historical and contemporary sources will serve as a means to understand the attitudes that contribute to media skepticism.

I will also evaluate the German news media’s response to the criticism leveled at them by significant parts of the population. Ultimately, I hope to provide a more thorough understanding of the attitudes underpinning this dangerous trend and to provide potential solutions to alleviate media skepticism in Germany and abroad.

Category

Humanities

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Apr 28th, 4:00 PM Apr 28th, 4:20 PM

Lügenpresse: Media skepticism in contemporary Germany

UC 330

In what is sometimes referred to as the post-truth era, the performance of the news media in conveying accurate information is under increased scrutiny. Media skepticism is on the rise in many democratic countries, and in German-speaking regions, this phenomenon coalesces around the term Lügenpresse, meaning lying press. Coined more than a century ago, the term today is closely tied to the Syrian refugee crisis and a surge of right-wing populism. Through research based on a series of in-depth interviews conducted in Berlin, as well as a review of news articles and media criticism literature, I will examine how the term Lügenpresse, has been used in the past, and why its resurgence is significant in Germany today. A hermeneutic analysis of historical and contemporary sources will serve as a means to understand the attitudes that contribute to media skepticism.

I will also evaluate the German news media’s response to the criticism leveled at them by significant parts of the population. Ultimately, I hope to provide a more thorough understanding of the attitudes underpinning this dangerous trend and to provide potential solutions to alleviate media skepticism in Germany and abroad.