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The reading of cultural and lifestyle journalism

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Based on analyses of 25 qualitative individual interviews with readers from different demographic backgrounds, this article investigates how readers experience and use journalism on culture in both online and print press. I argue that the use of journalism on culture is constituted within different reading positions. These reading positions are characterized not only as objectively and ideologically determined categories (Hall 1973), but also as subjectively constituted (Schrder 2000) ways for audiences to negotiate personal and professional interests related to their engagement in the (cultural) public sphere (Couldry et al 2007) and the media they choose to use. Different reading patterns result from the ways in which readers negotiate and use different texts and textual elements (e.g. critical debate in a review) for different purposes (e.g. relaxation, entertainment, information, education etc.). Thus, the article explores whether and how the use of journalism on culture is interrelated with more universal processes of meaning production, and therefore it draws on a socio-cognitive perspective, especially in regard to schemes of expectation and experience (e.g. Bruun 2004; Waldahl 1998; Engebretsen 1998).
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Keywords: cultural journalism; lifestyle journalism; newspapers; qualitative audience studies; readership; socio-cognitive theory

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Aarhus University, Denmark.

Publication date: 2010-10-01

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  • Northern Lights: Film and Media Studies Yearbook was first published in 2002 and places particular emphasis on film, television and new media. The yearbook, although carrying a theme each issue, welcomes a broad range of articles along with shorter review pieces.
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