- Where has the doctor gone? The mediazation of medicine on Dutch television, 1961-2000
- Public Understanding of Science
- Volume | Issue number
- 17 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
Health issues and medical science receive a lot of attention on television. Of all the sciences, the European public is most interested in medicine, and the public uses television as their main source of information on science. There has been hardly any empirical research, however, into the historical development of the representation of medical science on television. The development of medical television was explored by carrying out a content analysis of Dutch non-fiction medical television programs spanning a period of 40 years. The speaking time allotted to experts has decreased over the years, while that allotted to laypeople has increased. We are seeing fewer references to sources and science and more expression of emotion and tension. The results suggest three periods of medical television: a scientific, a journalistic and a lay period. Medical television in 2000 shows a personified picture of patients against an instrumentalized and symbolized medical backdrop.
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