Pacific Media Centre Pacific Media Watch Pacific Journalism Review Pacific Scoop

A ‘heart to heart’ on race relations: TVNZ’s State of the Nation as public sphere discourse

Volume 11, Issue 1

April, 2005

From page
133
to page
153
Phelan, Sean; Bernanke, Judith; and Fountaine, Susan (2005). A ‘heart to heart’ on race relations: TVNZ’s State of the Nation as public sphere discourse. Pacific Journalism Review, 11(1): 133-153.
Sean Phelan, Judith Bernanke and Susan Fountaine
Publication date: 
April, 2005

This article considers TVNZ's audience discussion programme, State of the Nation, as a moment of public sphere discourse. The programme's pre-broadcast branding and deliberate construction of a bicultural television space is examined, while particular attention is given to the hosts' framing of the discussion and the programme was a questionable public sphere contribution, partly because the structuring of the discussion reinforced the established polarities of the Aotearoa/New Zealand 'race relations' debate, over-privileged producer control at the expense of audience participation and was, more generally, indicative of the limits of TVNZ's post-Charter commitment to public service broadcasting.