Cultural Globalization on the Printed Page: Stability and Change in the Proportion of Foreign Cultural Items in Five European Newspapers, 1960–2010

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 09:30
Location: Hörsaal IOeG (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Tina LAURONEN, University of Helsinki, Finland
Riie HEIKKILA, University of Helsinki, Finland
Semi PURHONEN, University of Tampere, Finland
Cultural globalization is one of the key processes affecting cultural classifications and hierarchies in national contexts. The significance of national borders may have decreased during the last decades (at least in the sense of the abundance of global cultural items circulating across countries), but the influence and amount of global cultural flows are hardly similar everywhere. Distinctions between global and local might also have become more salient in novel ways. This paper presents an analysis of the changes in the relative weight of national and global culture and the arts in the cultural sections of nationally leading newspapers from five European countries – ABC/El País (Spain), Dagens Nyheter (Sweden), Helsingin Sanomat (Finland), Le Monde (France) and The Guardian (UK) – from 1960 to 2010. Through content analysis of samples of the newspapers (the unit of analysis being an article, altogether 11,775 cases), the paper examines how the composition of national and geographical origin of the artists and cultural products discussed has changed in 50 years. Thus, the paper asks whether the globalization of culture has increased or whether national culture remains dominant, to what degree there is variation according to the cultural area or art form discussed, and whether the five newspapers embedded in their national contexts are different in these respects. The analysis will cover several cultural areas, including music, literature, cinema, television and the fine arts. The results are in line with the supposed trend towards globalization of culture, but not as straightforwardly as one might expect.