Prof. Henrik Örnebring: Individuals and networks in the history of journalism: three examples

Henrik Örnebring (2024)

As part of the symposium “Actor-Driven Approaches to the History of Journalism”, CEMES researchers are invited to attend our keynote speech by Professor Henrik Örnebring online.


Focusing not only on individuals but also on their networks (in the widest sense of the word) can help journalism historians move beyond the “Great Man”-style biographical approach that has been common in journalism history. I present three (brief) and disparate examples of how an analysis of the networks of individuals can provide new insights into the wider social and cultural context of historical changes in journalism. The three examples are early press freedom theorist Peter Forsskål (1732-1763), founder of Aftonbladet Lars Johan Hierta (1801-1872), and US Black woman journalist pioneer Thelma Berlack Boozer (1906-2001).

Henrik Örnebring is a Professor of media and communication at Karlstad University. He got his PhD at the University of Gothenburg ('01). Between 2002 and 2013 he worked in the United Kingdom, mostly at the University of Oxford but also at the London School of Economics, University of Leicester and Roehampton University.