Article 9221

Title of the article

Reconstruction of the image of the USA through a content-analysis of Soviet periodicals of 1956–1964 

Authors

Ivan N. Lopatkin, Postgraduate student, Orenburg State Pedagogical University (19 Sovetskaya street, Orenburg, Russia), E-mail: ivan-lopatkin1988@mail.ru
Ravilya R. Khisamutdinova, Doctor of historical sciences, professor, head of the sub-department of general history and methods of teaching history and social sciences, Orenburg State Pedagogical University (19 Sovetskaya street, Orenburg, Russia), E-mail: hisamutdinova@inbox.ru 

Index UDK

94(47) 

DOI

10.21685/2072-3024-2021-2-9 

Abstract

Background. The materials of the print media are one of the key historical sources that are necessary for a detailed consideration of a particular issue. In modern research, working with the contents of periodical publications, content analysis becomes particularly relevant, since it allows us to obtain quantitative characteristics of the indicators under consideration. The purpose of the research is to reconstruct the image of the United States based on content analysis of the USSR periodical publications of 1956–1964.
Materials and methods. With the help of content analysis, 5 periodicals had been analyzed for 9 years: publications of the newspaper “Pravda”, magazines “Agitator”, “Krokodil”, “Ogonyok”, materials of the regional magazine “Agitator’s Notebook”. Front-end sampling was used to analyze the materials. In addition, the emphasis was made on publications that coincided chronologically with the key events in both the history of the USA and Soviet-American relations. The total number of analyzed materials of the newspaper “Pravda” was 3280 issues, the above-mentioned magazines included 1230 issues (not all publications
were considered in chronological full). All in all, the total number of analyzed materials is 4510 issues. The main reason for selecting the issues for analysis was the fact that they gave coverage to any aspects of the US domestic and foreign policy. Namely, they included reports of special correspondents, addresses, reports and interviews of political leaders, articles of cultural figures, scientists, economists, TASS reports, caricature, interviews of ordinary Soviet citizens.
Results. We were able to identify a number of segments, namely components of the image of the United States. Furthermore, we managed to determine the frequency of their coverage in the press. The changes in the frequency of use of certain ideologemes and lexical forms that were found during the content analysis allowed us to trace the transformation of the image of the United States, which domestic propaganda tried to impose on Soviet citizens. These changes were caused by internal political changes in the USSR and events in the international arena.
Conclusions. Thanks to content analysis, we managed to construct some general image of the United States, formed by the press during the thaw period. The United States appeared to Soviet readers as an economically developed power, but at the same time (due to the disadvantages of the capitalist formation) doomed to defeat in the economic competition with the USSR. It was noted that there was no democracy, freedom, justice in the country. The rapid degradation and commercialization of American culture was emphasized. In the matters connected with the foreign policy, anti-American rhetoric was consistently tough, which was caused by the Cold War, the confrontation between NATO and the Department of Internal Affairs. For the first time in this period, the Soviet press focused on covering the problems of scientific and technological progress in the United States. The rhetoric on this issue was not uniform, which was due to the new successes of the USSR in nuclear physics and cosmonautics. 

Key words

content analysis, enemy image, mass media, Soviet press, Soviet-American relations, thaw period, cold war 

 

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References

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Дата создания: 14.07.2021 09:24
Дата обновления: 16.07.2021 08:27