The journalistic structure of feeling: An exploration of career life histories of Israeli journalists

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The study explores 33 occupational life histories of current and former Israeli journalists. By doing so, it enables us to better understand how the fundamental changes that the journalistic profession underwent during recent decades shaped and influenced the occupational progression of Israeli journalists. Our interviews validate previous work on the partial professional standing of journalism showing that individuals enter journalism in a protracted and uneven manner. In addition, the analysis of modes of reasoning for entering journalism charts the informal boundaries of overt journalistic political identification. Finally, an exploration of self-narrated occupational highs and lows shows that career highs are always identified as personal achievements while career lows are mostly narrated as outcomes of larger organizational or institutional constraints. The current chaotic nature of journalism organizations, as reflected in our life history corpus, illustrates an environment in which there is a clear disconnect between actions and rewards.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)987-1005
Number of pages19
Issue number8
StatePublished - 27 Nov 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Israel Science Foundation (grant number 307/11).

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2013.


  • Israel
  • Life histories
  • crisis in journalism
  • journalism
  • narratives
  • professionalism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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