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The Role of Border Newspapers in Mexico: A Case Study of Five Tijuana Dailies

Barbara W. Hartung


As scholars focus increasingly on the border of Mexico and the United States, issues related to economics, politics, health, immigration and, culture dominate. Little emphasis, however, has been placed on border communication. How peoples of the border -- both in Mexico and in the United States -- receive their knowledge and information about this vast region, of which they are a part, appears to offer rich insight into opinion formation, perceptions of the border, perceptions of one's own country and one's neighbors.

There has been a considerable amount of research conducted on how the U.S. media function and on how consumers use the media. A lesser amount of research, although still considerable, has been conducted on the Mexican use of media. Little research, however, has been done on border media comparisons, an area of considerable challenge. This conspicuous absence of research may be due in part to a lack of interest of both Mexican and U.S. media scholars, but may also be the result of the difficulty of comparison of media on the two sides of the border, stemming from a lack of structure in which meaningful comparisons can be made.

In an effort to gain a preliminary understanding of border media and to begin to formulate a systematic agenda for study, the focus of this article is an examination of Mexican border journalism to determine if its practitioners perceive it to be different from or similar to journalism practiced in non-border areas of Mexico. While this study does not attempt directly to address the problem of transborder media comparisons, the framework of analysis used here could be applied to the more difficult problem of transborder comparisons.

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Print ISSN: 0886-5655
Online ISSN: 2159-1229