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JOURNALISM_190_-_Syllabus_-_08_-15-

JOURNALISM_190_-_Syllabus_-_08_-15- -...

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JOURNALISM 190 INTRODUCTION TO JOURNALISM Fall 2009   Geoffrey Cowan, Professor E-mail:  [email protected] ; Phone: 213-740-4466 Office Hours:  ASC 301B – For office hours see blackboard  (blackboard.usc.edu) Monica Alba  (for students whose last name starts with the letters A through  B) E-mail:  [email protected] Office Hours: By appointment Julia James  (for students whose last name starts with the letters C through  I) E-mail:   [email protected]   Office Hours: By appointment Christina Massoud  (for students whose last name starts with the letters J  through Ma) E-mail:  [email protected] Office Hours: By appointment Nichele McClendon (Head TA)  (for students whose last name starts with  the letters Mc through Sc) E-mail:  [email protected] Office Hours: By appointment Rebecca Shapiro  (for students whose last name starts with the letters     Se  through Z) E-mail:  [email protected]   Office Hours: By appointment   Course Description and Objectives 1
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As we start this course, here is a question for you to ponder: What is  journalism? In one sense, the answer seems obvious; but in the world today,  it actually represents a problem, a challenge, and an opportunity. There are  several related questions: What was it; what is it; has it changed; can it  survive; is it being replaced? Can journalism be defined as information in  the public interest – or is that definition too narrow, too broad, or both?  Those questions befuddle the industry, but they will enrich our  conversation. Similarly, journalism educators are asking what they (that is,  we ) should be teaching students. What are the implications of evolving  technologies, business structures, and reading and viewing habits? While  educators everywhere try to solve that riddle, we (that is, hopefully,  you can have fun playing around with some possible answers.   During a time of dramatic developments at all levels of society, and a time  of rapid changes in journalism and the news industry, this course will  provide a quick and (we hope) engaging and memorable exploration of  several areas of current and enduring importance.  We will use some of the  most important news events of the day as the backdrop for our readings and  discussion. For example, if the class had been in session during the summer,  we would have spent time on: the elections in Iran and the aftermath; the  battles over the California budget and over national health care legislation;  the confirmation hearings for Sonia Sotomayer; the obituaries of Walter  Cronkite; the story of Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and the Cambridge 
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