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‘From Terrorism To Television’: New Books Narrates The Story Of Pakistan’s Robust But Restrained Media

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Press Release

Pakistan’s mass media are known to be robust and restrained at the same time. Nation’s print, electronic, and social media have survived a repeated onslaught on their freedom and even threats on their survival throughout the history as an independent state.

A new book “From Terrorism to Television: Dynamics of Media, State, and society in Pakistan” published by Routledge (London and India), narrates this story with scholarly and well-researched themes contributed by university professors, researchers, and journalists from Pakistan, England, Australia, and the United States. 

Co-editors of the book, Qaisar Abbas and Farooq Sulehria have set the tone of the volume with a sound theoretical framework and a thorough survey of the evolution of the media in Pakistan within the context of freedom of expression, in the first chapter. Qaisar Abbas is a media scholar and former professor and assistant dean based in the United States. Farooq Sulehria, a known journalist in Pakistan, is assistant professor at Beaconhouse National University (BNU). 

The book analyzes contemporary issues such as freedom of expression, jihadi media contents and terrorism, TV talk shows and coverage of Kashmir, harassment of women journalists, media images of Mala Yousufzai and Mukhtaran Mai, coverage of Osama bin Laden’s killing, the Oscar winning documentary on women victims of honour killing, Balochistan in the mainstream media, and other topics. 

Known scholars and journalists offer fresh approaches and reliable methodologies on multiple themes related to media and society. These include Fawzia Afzal-Khan, Faizullah Jan, Afiya Shehrbano Zia, Ayesha Khan, Amir Hamza Marwan, Haya Fatima Iqbal, Farah Zia, and Adnan Aamir. 

The book also includes interviews of three veteran journalists and media scholars on freedom of expression and the plight of working journalists in Pakistan: I. A. Rehman, Dr. Mehdi Hasan, and Dr. Eric Rahim. 

By dedicating the book to the four journalists, Masoodullah Khan, Nasir Zaidi, Khawar Naim Hashmi, and Iqbal Jafferi, who were sentenced to flogging by the Zia dictatorship in 1978, the editors have paid tributes to the whole community of intellectuals who resist attempts to silence their voices. 

Based on the analysis of multiple media types by a diverse group of scholars, this book can be considered as the first authentic anthology on the Pakistani media.

 

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Naya Daur