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Table Of Contents

FIGURE21.Media Use by Attitudinal Types in the USSR
3.4.Choice of Programming from Radio Liberty
4.2.Media Use by Demographic Characteristics
4.3.Media Use by “Factor Types”
4.4.Trends in Media Use:1978–1988
5.1.The War in Afghanistan:1979–1989
5.2.The SamizdatPhenomenon:1970s
FIGURE36.Awareness of Samizdatin the USSR:1977
FIGURE37.Attitudes Toward Samizdatin the USSR:1977
5.3.The Korean Airliner Incident:1983
Western Radio ListenersNon-Listeners
5.4.The Chernobyl Disaster:1986
5.5. Glasnost’and Perestroika:1985–1990
5.6.The Solidarity Movement in Poland:1980–1981
6.1.Large Cold-War Audiences
6.2.Widespread Regime Attacks
6.3.Effect on USSR Media
6.4.Influence on Attitude and Opinion Formation
6.5.Summing Up
7.1.Comparative Listening Rates
7.2.Demographic Comparisons
7.4.Western Stations Heard
P. 1
Discovering the Hidden Listener, by R. Eugene Parta

Discovering the Hidden Listener, by R. Eugene Parta

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Published by Hoover Institution
A pariah during the Cold War, Radio Liberty was ultimately accepted as a legitimate participant on the Russian media scene by the authorities themselves. How did it happen that Radio Liberty—once the most vilified of Western broadcasters in the Soviet Union—had amassed such a vast audience that it was able to experience its finest hour defending the same democratic forces that it had nurtured over almost four decades of broadcasting?

Based on more than 50,000 interviews conducted with Soviet citizens traveling outside the USSR during the period 1972–1990, this book attempts to answer the question from the listeners' perspective: How many listeners were there? Who were they? Why did they listen? How did they listen? What did the broadcasts mean to them? Did they make a difference? The author addresses audience size and listening trends over time, the position Western radio occupied in the Soviet media environment, listeners' demographic traits and attitudes, the evolution of the image of different Western broadcasters, and listeners' programming preferences. Through six brief case studies, he also looks at the role of Western radio in various crisis situations.

The book concludes with some observations about the ultimate impact of Western radio and Radio Liberty—what they actually meant to their listeners and how their influence may have inspired or reinforced other tendencies at work in the USSR as it moved toward a freer society.

R. Eugene Parta is the retired director of Audience Research and Program Evaluation for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Prague. He has worked in the field of international broadcasting audience research since 1969; in Munich he was director of Media Opinion Research of the RFE/RL Research Institute. Parta has written extensively on media use, communications, and public opinion in Central and Eastern Europe and been a frequent speaker and participant in international academic and professional conferences.
A pariah during the Cold War, Radio Liberty was ultimately accepted as a legitimate participant on the Russian media scene by the authorities themselves. How did it happen that Radio Liberty—once the most vilified of Western broadcasters in the Soviet Union—had amassed such a vast audience that it was able to experience its finest hour defending the same democratic forces that it had nurtured over almost four decades of broadcasting?

Based on more than 50,000 interviews conducted with Soviet citizens traveling outside the USSR during the period 1972–1990, this book attempts to answer the question from the listeners' perspective: How many listeners were there? Who were they? Why did they listen? How did they listen? What did the broadcasts mean to them? Did they make a difference? The author addresses audience size and listening trends over time, the position Western radio occupied in the Soviet media environment, listeners' demographic traits and attitudes, the evolution of the image of different Western broadcasters, and listeners' programming preferences. Through six brief case studies, he also looks at the role of Western radio in various crisis situations.

The book concludes with some observations about the ultimate impact of Western radio and Radio Liberty—what they actually meant to their listeners and how their influence may have inspired or reinforced other tendencies at work in the USSR as it moved toward a freer society.

R. Eugene Parta is the retired director of Audience Research and Program Evaluation for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Prague. He has worked in the field of international broadcasting audience research since 1969; in Munich he was director of Media Opinion Research of the RFE/RL Research Institute. Parta has written extensively on media use, communications, and public opinion in Central and Eastern Europe and been a frequent speaker and participant in international academic and professional conferences.

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Publish date: Oct 30, 2007
Added to Scribd: Jun 14, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reservedISBN:9780817947323
List Price: $9.99

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