Poliitilise skandaali konstrueerimine Postimehes Välisministeeriumist kadunud dokumentide juhtumi näitel



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Tartu Ülikool



My bachelor thesis was to analyze how the Estonian daily newspaper Postimees builds up a political scandal. Lull & Hinerman (1997) pointed out that media puts the scandal into a narrative form. They concluded that a scandal cannot develop before it is served to the audience as a story. Brian McNair (1999) also said that journalists communicate the meaning of politics and they may insert the events of political life into narrative frameworks (McNair 1999:73). Kennet L. Hacker (1996) discussed the relationship of power and language and stated that the political discourse analysis gives us the opportunity to examine carefully how reporters label political events and media use language to communicate politics. Thompson`s theory of political scandal introduces a variety of criteria a scandal usually meets. Among them were that the occurrence of scandal involves the transgression of certain values and moral codes; they occurrence involves an element of secrecy or concealment; some non-participants disapprove the actions, some express their disapproval; and the disclosure of the actions may damage the reputation of the individuals responsible for them (Thompson 2000: 13-14). Thompson also divided the scandal info phases. I structured my work in the discourse analysis after these phases. To find out how Postimees constructs a scandal I used quantitative analysis to determine the speakers and the ones that were spoken about; discourse analysis to find out the sub-themes, expand the category of speakers and the ones spoken about, to determine the journalistic focus and transgression of moral conventions. Finally I carried out two interviews with news-reporters from Postimees to find out if the journalistic routines have an effect on the texts that journalists produce, as have appointed out Shoemaker & Reese (1991). Besides Postimees I also examined in quantitative and discourse analysis Eesti Päevaleht – another Estonian daily newspaper. My aim was to give a degree of comparison for the results about Postimees to be as authentic as possible. I have to say that for the whole work to be more authentic I should have included incorporated into the methodology an entographic research for media studies. In other words conduct an observation of journalistic routines in Postimees. But due to the limitations of the materials of this work I excluded it. Still I am convinced that this analyze gives splendid opportunities for further researches about political scandals. From my research I concluded that the person that most often spoke in news was Andrus Ansip. The reason appeared from interviews – Ansip was an easy source for journalists because he usually answered the phone and was eager to speak. Other persons as well as reporters themselves most often spoke about Juhan Parts and Kristiina Ojuland as the main characters of the scandal. Discourse analysis concluded that the main sub-theme in the texts was the conflict between Reformierakond and Res Publica – two of the three parties in the coalition government. There were still other themes in the articles that were at times like a maze above the main theme, covering it all up so that the audience did not understand what was being told. Interviews concluded that journalists did not analyze critically the motives why some sources that wanted to stay publicly unidentified gave them the inside information. Though Toomas Sildam, the news editor assured me that in case of this scandal Postimees did not depend on its informers, the discourse analyze concluded the opposite. Namely the journalists used a lot of information without proper reference to its source in their texts, in addition there occurred cases in witch the journalist referred to anonymous sources or to media itself. The latter is characteristic to a political scandal as media tries to legitimate comments into facts.


H Social Sciences (General)