Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Citations Needed, Episode 06: The Media’s Default Setting of White Supremacy

(Artwork pictured by @/yesitsalex___)

On Episode 6 of Citations Needed, Adam and I explore how the media both consciously and subconsciously works to smear black victims, protect the police, and works overtime to ameliorate the sensibilities of white media consumers.

The white supremacist regime at work in the media can be broken down into three main narrative devices:
  1. The use of language to downplay state violence and assert false parity
  2. The uncritical dissemination of exaggerated or made up threats to police to turn the aggressor into the victim
  3. The posthumous smearing of black victims to rationalize their killing after the fact.
In this episode, we examine the mechanisms of these genres, how they influence public perception and why they create the media environment that makes more Mike Browns all but certain.

The Guest

Dr. Jared A Ball is a professor of Media, Communications, and Africana Studies at Morgan State University in Maryland. Dr. Ball is a prolific writer, speaker, and multimedia producer at His commentary can be read everywhere from the Washington Post to The Nation, the Grio to the Root, and beyond. A forthcoming book from Third World Press entitled, Not Our President: New Directions from the Pushed Out, the Others, and the Clear Majority in Trump’s Stolen America, will featured his essay “Agent Orange: Donald Trump as Political Chemical Warfare.”

Here's the episode:

Show Notes for this episode can be found here.


Citations Needed is a media criticism podcast, hosted by Adam Johnson and Nima Shirazi, political commentators and media analysts working to call bullshit on (usually corporate) media’s ubiquitous reliance on and regurgitation of false and destructive narratives, tropes and stereotypes.

Citations Needed is produced by Josh Kross and Florence Barrau-Adams. Our theme song is ‘Nonphenomenal Lineage’ by Grandaddy.


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