Associate Professor of Media, Culture and Communication
Phone: 998 5820
Rodney Benson is associate professor in the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication. He is also an affiliated faculty member in the NYU Dept. of Sociology and has been a visiting scholar or invited lecturer at universities in France (Toulouse IEP, Paris EHESS), Germany (Universities of Bremen and Weimar), Denmark (Copenhagen Business School, Roskilde University), Norway (University of Oslo), and Finland (University of Helsinki).
Benson's research lies at the intersection of the sociology of culture, the sociology of globalization, political communication, and journalism studies.
Benson is the author of Shaping Immigration News: A French-American Comparison (Cambridge, 2013) and co-author (with Matthew Powers) of the Free Press policy report Public Media and Political Independence (2011). He is also the editor (with Erik Neveu) of Bourdieu and the Journalistic Field (Polity, 2005).
His numerous articles on comparative media research, media and immigration, the U.S. and French (and other European) news media, and the theories of Bourdieu and Habermas have been published in such journals as Press/Politics, The American Sociologist, Poetics, Political Communication, American Sociological Review, European Journal of Communication, Media, Culture & Society, Theory and Society, French Politics, Culture & Society, and Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales. He has also published articles of media criticism in the Christian Science Monitor, AlJazeera.com, and Le Monde Diplomatique.
Benson has also written book chapters on U.S. alternative newsweeklies in Contesting Media Power (Rowman and Littlefield, 2003, J. Curran and N. Couldry, eds.), comparative media research in The Routledge Companion to News Media and Journalism Studies (Routledge, 2009, S. Allan, ed.), journalism and the internet in New Media, Old News (Sage, 2009, N. Fenton, ed.), reconceptualizing media sociology in Media Sociology: A Reappraisal (Polity, 2014, S. Waisbord, ed.), and de-westerning media theory in Internationalizing International Communication (Michigan, in press, C.C. Le, ed.).
He serves on the editorial boards of the International Journal of Press/Politics and Politiques de Communication.
Benson has taught the PhD and MA core theory seminars, a PhD/MA course on comparative media systems/production of culture (cross-listed with sociology), and undergraduate courses on media and globalization, public relations and the public sphere, and production of culture.
Prior to joining the NYU faculty, he was assistant professor of international communications and sociology at The American University of Paris. He holds a PhD in sociology from the University of California-Berkeley.
Grants and Awards
- 2010: Axel and Margaret Ax:Son Johnson Foundation (Sweden), 2-Year Grant for Research on Media Ownership
- 2008: NYU Global Fellowship (Paris research)
- 2008: NYU Steinhardt Methodology Award (online news media research)
- 2007: NYU Humanities Council Grant
- 2005: "MediaCity" European Union Fellowship, Bauhaus University, Weimar, Germany
- 2005: Top Paper Award (one of three awarded; co-authored with Dan Hallin), Political Communication Division, ICA conference, New York
- 2005: Top Journal Article Nomination (one of six articles nominated), Political Communication Division, ICA conference, New York.
- 2005: NYU University Challenge Fund Grant
- 2004: NYU Steinhardt Challenge Fund Grant
- 2002: Council for European Studies, Young Scholars Network Travel Grant
- Fields, public spheres, networks
- Sociology of culture and news
- Comparative media systems
- Media and immigration
- French media
- Alternative media
- Cultural globalization
- Discourse and image content analysis
- Rodney Benson. Shaping Immigration News: A French-American Comparison (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2013). (link)
- "Futures of the News: International Considerations and Further Reflections." In Natalie Fenton, ed., New Media, Old News (London: Sage, 2010): 187-200. (link)
- "Comparative News Media Systems." In Stuart Allan, ed., Routledge Companion to News Media and Journalism Studies, ed. Stuart Allan (London: Routledge, 2010): 614-626.
- "What Makes for a Critical Press? A Case Study of French and U.S. Immigration News Coverage." International Journal of Press/Politics, 15, 1 (January 2010): 3-24.
- "What Makes News More Multiperspectival? A Field Analysis." Poetics, 37, 5-6 (fall 2009): 402-418. (link)
- "Shaping the Public Sphere: Habermas and Beyond." The American Sociologist, 40 (fall 2009): 175-192. (link)
- Rodney Benson. "Normative Theories of Journalism." The Blackwell International Encyclopedia of Communication (Wolfgang Donsbach, ed., 2008): 2591-2597.
- Rodney Benson and Daniel C. Hallin. "How States, Markets and Globalization Shape the News: The French and U.S. National Press, 1965-1997." European Journal of Communication 22, 1 (March 2007): 27-48.
- Rodney Benson and Aurora Wallace. "Space, Place, and the Changing American Mediascape." In F. Eckardt and Martina Zschocke, eds., MediaCity (Weimar, Germany: Bauhaus University Publishers, 2007): 209-226.
- “News Media as a ‘Journalistic Field’: What Bourdieu adds to New Institutionalism, and Vice Versa.” Political Communication 23, 2 (2006): 187-202.
- Rodney Benson and Erik Neveu, Eds. Bourdieu and the Journalistic Field (Cambridge, UK: Polity Press, 2005). (link)
- Rodney Benson and Abigail C. Saguy. "Constructing Social Problems in an Age of Globalization: A French-American Comparison." American Sociological Review 70, 2 (2005): 233-259.
- Rodney Benson. "Bringing the Sociology of Media Back In." Political Communication, 21 (2004): 275-292 (Lead article in special issue on "Political Communication and Sociology").
- Rodney Benson. "La fin du Monde?: Tradition and Change in the French Press." French Politics,Culture & Society 22, 1 (2004): 108-126.
- Rodney Benson. "The political/literary model of French journalism: Change and continuity in immigration coverage, 1973-1991." Journal of European Area Studies 10, 1 (2002): 49-70.
- “Tearing down the ‘Wall’ in American Journalism.” Core: International Journal of the Humanities (Paris) 1, 1 (2001). (English-language version of “La logique du profit dans les médias américains.” Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales 131-132 (2000): 107-115.)
- Rodney Benson. "Field theory in comparative context: a new paradigm for media studies." Theory and Society 28, 3 (1999): 463-498.
- Rodney Benson. "Journalism, French and American Style." On-Line Interview with Jay Rosen, "Pressthink" website, December 2003. (link)
- GRADUATE-LEVEL COURSE SYLLABUS: Comparative Media Systems (spring 2010)
- Is Narrative Enough? Immigration and the Genres of Journalism: Invited Talk at Columbia University School of Journalism, Communications Colloquium, March 7, 2014, New York
- Challenging the 'New Descriptivism': Restoring Explanation, Evaluation, and Theoretical Dialogue to Communication Research: Remarks at the Qualitative Political Communication Pre-Conference, International Communication Association Seattle, May 22, 2014
- PhD Core Theory Seminar
- MA Core Theory Seminar
- PhD/MA Seminar (cross-listed with Sociology): Comparative Media Systems / Production of Culture
- Undergraduate Course: Media and Globalization
- Undergraduate Senior Seminar: Public Opinion
- Undergraduate Senior Seminar: Public Relations and the Public Sphere
- Undergraduate Senior Seminar: Production of Culture