Communicating Compassionately in a Crisis: John Curtin and Journalists, 1941-1945

Coatney, Caryn (2020) Communicating Compassionately in a Crisis: John Curtin and Journalists, 1941-1945. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 10 (12). pp. 36-45. ISSN 2220-8488


Abstract

Professional communicators face more demands to develop caring and trustworthy relations with journalists. Corporate leaders increasingly need to develop skills in communicating compassionately with news teams during a largescale crisis or public emergency. Recently, scholars have been advocating for a historical approach in using the lessons of previous successes in crisis communication. One of the most acute emergencies in history has been the Second World War. Although often overlooked, the war generated remarkable innovation in political leaders’ engagement with the media. Relatively little scholarly attention has been paid to Australian wartime prime minister John Curtin’s exceptionally close relations with journalists from the US, Canada and Australia. His journalismoriented ethos was forgotten as post-war leaders developed the technique of delivering impersonal, unidirectional news conferences to the largely undifferentiated mass media. Scholarly interest has recently resurged into communicators’ compassionate performances as they deliver personalized messages to audiences. This paper uses rarely researched archives that finds among the wartime leaders, Curtin elevated journalists’ roles to convey public appearances of being a caring prime minister, good neighbour and citizens’ friend. This conception of ethos is useful for the study of communicators’ roles in portraying compassion, trust, and friendship towards journalists during an extended crisis.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Humanities and Communication (1 Mar 2019 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Humanities and Communication (1 Mar 2019 -)
Date Deposited: 03 Feb 2021 05:55
Last Modified: 10 Feb 2021 06:03
Uncontrolled Keywords: Crisis communication, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, journalism, John Curtin, leadership communication, media relations, World War II
Fields of Research (2008): 19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing > 1903 Journalism and Professional Writing > 190301 Journalism Studies
Fields of Research (2020): 47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4701 Communication and media studies > 470105 Journalism studies
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970120 Expanding Knowledge in Language, Communication and Culture
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1302 Communication > 130299 Communication not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: doi:10.30845/ijhss.v10n12p5
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/41090

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