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When PSB is delivered by the hand of God: The case of Roman Catholic broadcast networks in Venezuela

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This article explores the nature and extent of the delivery of public service broadcasting (PSB) by alternative models and actors in Latin America. The main hypothesis is that PSB is delivered in Venezuela not by the state but by the Roman Catholic Church. In looking at the case of the Instituto Radiofnico Fe y Alegra (IRFA) we argue that, contrary to what might be expected, this media outlet provides what by all standards can be described as PSB. The article is based on research sponsored by the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland and which included content analysis, semi-structured interviews and participatory observation for over three months in 2008. The article makes comparative reference to public service broadcasters in the United States and in Europe and aims to challenge traditional sources of knowledge regarding PSB.

Keywords: Fe y Alegra; Latin America; Roman Catholic Church; Venezuela; faith; public service broadcasting; radio; religion

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of Stirling. 2: Universidad Catlica Andrs Bello. 3: Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Publication date: September 1, 2010

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  • The International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics is committed to analyzing the politics of communication(s) and cultural processes. It addresses cultural politics in their local, international and global dimensions, recognizing equally the importance of issues defined by their specific cultural geography and those that traverse cultures and nations.
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