Deadline for the submission of abstracts: 30 September 2023
The BBC is credited for helping British African colonies establish broadcasting services which also allowed it to exert its level of international influence ranging from the structuring of the broadcasting institutions themselves to the media strategies and ideologies, including their creative practices (Dupéré, 2021; Hendy, 2018). It began with the British Colonial Office supporting the BBC in setting up radio broadcasting transmitter sites in East and Central Africa in the 1940s (Armour, 1984). The then Secretary of State, Creech Jones, despatched what was termed the Confidential Circular of 1948, Broadcasting in the Colonies, an updated version of the 1936 circular, which emphasised the need to support the establishment of broadcasting services in Africa as part of improving communication between the government and the governed (Armour 1984:359). The Colonial Office engaged the BBC to appoint one of its senior employees, OliverWhitley, to work in its office to help with the project.
Although it initially faced some challenges, the initiative succeeded in most parts of the continent. For instance, in West Africa and the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland in Southern Africa, the BBC helped set up the first radio broadcasting systems. They also created regional programmes with a pronounced local flavour; that is, vernacular broadcasts with national programmes in English for educated Africans (Armour, 1984). Well known for its Reithian principles—to inform, educate and entertain—and commitment to the principles of independence and impartiality (Dupéré (2021), multiple public broadcasters in Sub-Saharan Africa like the South AfricanBroadcasting Corporation (Meyer, 2015), the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (Ngugi & Kinyua, 2014), Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (Serwornoo, 2018), Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (Mano 2004) and the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (Manjawira & Mitunda, 2011), have similarly adopted these BBC tenets, including programmes and programming styles and decorum.
The central argument being advanced by this volume is that the BBC has made remarkable contributions to the development of the radio in many African countries. The BBC model has impacted radio broadcasting systems in multiple ways; some adopted it wholesomely, with others, over the years, embraced hybrid models of the British, local and transnational systems. The BBC model is a reference point, as it has become a benchmark for broadcasting style and etiquette in most parts of Africa. The BBC has had an enduring influence on broadcasting in Africa in much the same way as Jeremy Tunstall (1977) believes American media had on the media worldwide in the 1960s and 1970s.
Although there are several studies on some of these issues, lacking in the literature is a comprehensive examination of the extent of the BBC’s influence on African radio, focusing on how it has been consolidated and sustained, including efforts to do things differently. In this edited volume, we welcome entries that cover the historical background of African radio with a focus on the BBC, the broadcasting structure and strategies, funding models and editorial policies, programming styles and content, consolidation of the BBC’s broadcasting styles, and creative ideas that demonstrate a departure from these styles.
The call is therefore interested in chapters that discuss the following and any related themes:
Please email chapter proposals of up to 400 words and brief author biographical information and affiliations to the editors at email@example.com and copy in firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. Decisions on proposals will be communicated to the authors by October 30, 2023. The book is earmarked for Palgrave Macmillan.
September 30, 2023, Abstract submission
October 30, 2023 Notification of Acceptance
December 20, 2023 Deadline for the first complete draft submission
January 30, 2024 Feedback on the first draft
March 30, 2024 Deadline for submission of the second draft
May 20, 2024 Final decision on submissions
July 30, 2024 Book submission to the publisher
Inquiries should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Anthony Gunde is an Associate Professor of Media, Communication and Cultural Studies at the Media and Communication Studies Department of the University of Malawi. He is also a Research Fellow at the Journalism Department, Stellenbosch University. Gunde holds a PhD in Journalism Studies from Stellenbosch University and a Master of Arts in Communications from Missouri State University. He has co-published a book, multiple chapters and journal articles in international peer-reviewed journals and books. Gunde is a member of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR).
Albert Sharra is a joint-postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Edinburgh, UK and the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. His research interests cover journalism and media studies, digital media, social media, digital activism, comparative politics, and government. He has taught media, politics, and international development for five years in South Africa and the UK. He has also published widely on journalism as a practice, digital media, and politics and presented papers at several international conferences in Africa, the USA, Europe, and the UK. Albert is also a multi-award-winning journalist with over ten years of newsroom experience, which included heading diverse editorial-content teams. He is a three-time winner of the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA)-Malawi Chapter ‘Overall Journalist of the Year Award’. Albert is a Digital Media Mentor for International Press Institute (IPI).
Jimmy Kainja is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Malawi. He has over ten years of experience teaching Media, Communication and Cultural Studies in the Media and Communication Studies department. His research interests are media and communication policy, journalism, new media, digital rights, freedom of expression, access to information and the intersection of media, democracy and development. He has published widely in these areas in international peer-reviewed journals and books.