Bugeja, Michael (2008), Living Ethics: Across Media Platforms (New York: Oxford Univ. Press). 343 + xxi pp. ISBN 978-0-19-518860-8. $69.95. (paper). (Chapter exercises, examples and sidebars; terminal notes, bibliography & index).
Michael Bugeja is both an administrator (director of the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication at Iowa State) and a scholar-with some 20 books under his belt. Perhaps more importantly, he is also a public scholar, writing op-ed and commentary pieces on contemporary issues for a number of periodicals. Living Ethics' organization is different from most media ethics textbooks, and thus has value beyond its utility as an undergraduate-level work. It assumes neither ignorance nor previously obtained knowledge on the part of its readers. The first part of the book, "building your ethical base," contains chapters on in?uence, responsibility and truth. The second part, "testing your ethical base," does so through chapters exploring falsehood, manipulation, temptation and bias. The third and last part contains chapters on fairness, power and value systems. This approach, carefully interwoven with photos and other examples, makes it particularly useful. -JMK
Lippmann, Walter (1920; reprinted 2008). Liberty and the News (Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press). xxv (foreword) + 61 + 30 (afterword) pp. ISBN 978-0-691-13480-2. $16.95. (General editor's foreword, foreword, afterword & index).
Much as the Free Press' 2003 reprinting of the 1928 edition of Upton Sinclair's The Brass Check has given us a new edition (with a carefully written new introduction by Robert W. McChesney and Ben Scott) of that important volume from journalism's past, so does Princeton University Press' new (2008) edition of Walter Lippmann's 1920 Liberty and the News. This publishing venture makes life much easier for those interested in learning how the concept and role of journalism has evolved into the industries that it now comprises, and how it has related to politics during that time. Liberty and the News now has a new foreword by Ronald Steel and a new afterword by Sidney Blumenthal. The original work- an essay in three parts, "Journalism and the Higher Law," "What Modern Liberty Means," and "Liberty and the News"-is only 61 small-sized pages long. However, and in spite of having been written 90 years ago, between World War I and the Great Depression, it contains a tremendous number of ideas that we would do well to incorporate into our thinking. After all, no other political journalist of the past century has had the effect on the public and the institutions of government as Walter Lippmann. -JMK