Past Speakers

Robert W. McChesney, October 2013Robert W. McChesney, October 2013
Robert W. McChesney is an expert on the political economy of communication, media policy, and 20th- and 21st-century media history.

Robert W. McChesney, prolific author, media policy expert, and the Gutgsell Endowed Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Campaign, is an expert on the political economy of communication, media policy, and 20th- and 21st-century media history.

McChesney published two path-breaking books in 2013 – Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism Is Turning the Internet Against Democracy and (with John Nichols) Dollarocracy: How the Money-and-Media-Election Complex Is Destroying America. 

In his engaging and at times even funny public address, McChesney shared what he learned while researching these, his 23rd and 24th books. Students and faculty in the packed hall welcomed the chance to hear from a distinguished mass communications policy and history expert at a time of great upheaval in the media—and indeed in all spheres political, economic, and geopolitical.

In 2002 McChesney cofounded FreePress, the national media reform organization, served as its president until 2008, and remains on its board of directors. His research and writing concentrate on the history and political economy of communication, emphasizing the role media play in democratic and capitalist societies. He coedits, with John Nerone, the History of Communication series for the University of Illinois Press. He has served as a judge for the Izzy Awards, presented by the Park Center for Independent Media, each of the  five years since its inception.

Besides his books, McChesney has authored more than 100 journal articles, 135 book chapters, and another 300+ print articles. He has given hundreds of speeches and presentations, and scores of interviews in every medium. (His CV is 120 pages long.) He holds an MA and PhD from the University of Washington.

AUDIO RECORDING OF McCHESNEY SPEECH AT IC, courtesy of Chris Knight, WRFI Community Radio, Watkins Glen, Ithaca: wrfi-20131003-mcchesney-speech.mp3


Visiting writer discusses free press and media policy, by Brandon Adelbock, The Ithacan, Sept. 27, 2013

Audio interview with WRFI's Sharon Clarke

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