First and Foremost Facts

Among folks that have always been weakened by their representation in the media of the world, these are those who have African origins, in Africa and elsewhere. Reactions to this state of affairs were the attempt to develop teaching in communications sciences also for Afro-descendants.

In this winter edition, we made a deliberate choice to look into the journalistic training presentation of two universities, one in Africa and the other in the United States of America, both proposed to candidates of Afro-African origins, not to establish a comparison but rather to identify what could be innovative for communication sciences.

For the historically black University of Oakwood in the southeast of the United States, training in information gathering and information work does not seem to be a priority at first sight. It is communication and art that stand out in the order of concern. We will venture to sense the reasons.

But as an institution stemming from religious persuasion-the university is of evangelical obedience-it is the spiritual awakening which should guide the education in journalism and public relations, adequate for industry and the labor market in general, with options for other fields touching on communication and art-(law, librarian sciences, schoolteaching)-that´s just as much offered in methods of transmitting the knowledge that wish to be synegetic. Here we want to substantiate the peculiarities.

Eastern Cape, located in South Africa, houses a journalism teaching institution, almost mainly devoted to the black communities. It´s the University of Fort Hare. Following an essentially European or British teaching model, from under- to the post-graduate level, journalism training for black South Africans is academically structured with no apparent difference to the mainstream UNESCO curriculum. We do, however, want to take a close look at where the difference lies and what the true cost of it would be.

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