Compassion Fatigue: How the Media Sell Disease, Famine, War and Death

Susan D. Moeller (Author)


In her impassioned new book, "Compassion Fatigue," Susan Moeller warns that the American media threaten our ability to understand the world around us. Why do the media cover the world in the way that they do? Are they simply following the marketplace demand for tabloid-style international news? Or are they creating an audience that has seen too much -- or too little -- to care? Through a series of studies of the "four horsemen of the Apocalypse" -- disease, famine, war and death -- Moeller investigate how newspapers, newsmagazines and television have covered international crises over the last two decades, identifying the ruts into which the media have fallen -- and revealing why.

Product Details

Publish Date
September 23, 1998
6.29 X 1.22 X 9.22 inches | 1.75 pounds
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About the Author

Susan D. Moeller is Director of the Journalism Program and Associate Professor of American Studies at Brandeis University. She has worked as a journalist for national magazines and newspapers and is the author of Shooting War: Photography and the American Experience of Combat (1989).


"Moeller's patient dissection of media is a penetrating analysis, concluding that after more and more death and war, disease and worse, consumers just get tire of caring. Change is needed."
-"Morton Times-News
..." important resource for journalism schools...."
-"The Evening Post
"[Moeller] provides challenging detail and analysis [and] raises uncomfortable truths in a readable, provocative manner."
-"The Australian
""Compassion Fatigue is a reportorial and moral success... [Moeller] demonstrates, in great detail and with tremendous discernment, how [our] self-absorption has served as a prophylactic against understanding."
-National Post
"Criticism of the press for its foreign coverage is hardly novel, but in this unrelenting, uncompromising book, Moeller manages to cast a fresh, unwavering eye on the problem....That Moeller's suggestions probably will not be acted upon should not diminish the accomplishment of this impressive book."
-"Columbia Journalism Review, July 1999