Introduction: Extraction, National Development and Environmental News in Twenty-first-century South America

  • Juliet Pinto
  • Paola Prado
  • J. Alejandro Tirado-Alcaraz
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Media and Environmental Communication book series (PSMEC)


A region where many local and national economies are based on natural resource extractive activities to meet global demand, South America provides an important laboratory for understanding the social construction of news regarding contestations over the promotion of extractivism as a national development strategy. Often residents living in extraction zones must deal with not only environmental degradation but also health impacts and loss of culture and heritage. Focusing on historical interfaces of news, environment, ideas of modernity and development, and media–state relations, Pinto, Prado and Tirado offer an introduction to the social construction of news that is provided to mass audiences in South America, and discuss the pressures that impact journalism in the region.


Gross Domestic Product Extractive Industry News Coverage Political Ecology Environmental Conflict 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Anderson, A. (1997). Media, culture and the environment. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Bebbington, A. (2009, September). The new extraction: Rewriting the political ecology of the Andes. NACLA Report on the Americas. Accessed January 29, 2014.Google Scholar
  3. Beck, U. (1992). Risk society: Toward a new modernity. London: SAGE.Google Scholar
  4. Blaikie, P. (2001). Social nature and environmental policy in the South: Views from veranda and veld. In N. Castree & P. Braun (Eds.), Social nature: Theory, practice and politics (pp. 133–150). Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  5. Boykoff, M. (2007). From convergence to contention: United States mass media representations of anthropogenic climate change science. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 32(4): 477–489.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Boykoff, M. (2011). Who speaks for the climate? Making sense of media reporting on climate change. New York: Cambridge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Boykoff, M., & Roberts, J. (2007). Media coverage of climate change: Current trends, strengths, weaknesses. United Nations Development Programme. human development report.Google Scholar
  8. Bryant, R., & Bailey, S. (1997). Third world political ecology. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  9. Burchardt, H. J., & Dietz, K. (2014). (Neo-)extractivism-a new challenge for development theory from Latin America. Third World Quarterly, 35(3): 468–486.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Carvalho, A. (2007). Ideological cultures and media discourses on scientific knowledge: Re-reading news on climate change. Public Understanding of Science, 16: 223–243.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Cavusgil, S. T., & Kardes, I. (2013). Brazil: Rapid development, internationalization, and middle class formation. Revista Eletrônica de Negócios Inernacionais, 8(1): 1–16.Google Scholar
  12. Chiang-Waren, X. (2016, June 20). For environmental activists, 2015 was the deadliest year yet. Accessed June 20, 2016.
  13. Collier, D. (1979). Overview of the bureaucratic-authoritarian model. In D. Collier (Ed.), The new authoritarianism in Latin America (pp. 19–32). New York: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Cottle, S. (1998). Ulrich Beck, “risk society,” and the media: A catastrophic view? European Journal of Communication, 13(1): 5–32.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Cottle, S. (2000). TV news, lay voices and the visualization of environmental risks. In S. Allan, B. Adam, & C. Carter (Eds.), Environmental risks and the media (pp. 29–44). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  16. Cottle, S. (2006). Mediatized conflict: Developments in media and conflict studies. New York: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Cottle, S. (2013). Environmental conflict in a global, media age: Beyond dualisms. In L. Lester & B. Hutchins (Eds.), Environmental conflict and the media (pp. 19–33). New York: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  18. Di Filippo, A. (2009). Estructuralismo latinoamericano y teoría económica. Revista CEPAL, 98. Accessed May 5, 2016.
  19. Diamond, L., Hartlyn, J., & Linz, J. (1999). Politics, society and democracy in Latin America. In L. Diamond, J. Hartlyn, J. Linz, & S. Lipset (Eds.), Democracy in developing countries: Latin America (2nd ed., pp. 1–70). Boulder: Lynne Rienner.Google Scholar
  20. Diaz-Nosty, B. (2009). Cambio climático, consenso científico y construcción mediática: Los paradigmas de la comunicación para la sostenibilidad. Revista Latina de Comunicación Social, 64: 99–119.Google Scholar
  21. Dotson, D. M., Jacobson, S. K., Lee Kaid, L. L., & Carlton, J. S. (2012). Media coverage of climate change in Chile: A content analysis of conservative and liberal newspapers. Environmental Communication: A Journal of Nature and Culture, 6(1): 64–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Dunwoody, S., & Griffin, R. (1993). Journalistic strategies for reporting long-term environmental issues: A case study of three Superfund sites. In A. Hansen (Ed.), The mass media and environmental issues (pp. 22–50). Leicester University.Google Scholar
  23. Forsyth, T. (2003). Critical political ecology: The politics of environmental science. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  24. Galeano, E. (1997). Open veins of Latin America: Five centuries of the pillage of a continent. New York: New York University Press.Google Scholar
  25. Gao, G. (2015, July 20). Latin America’s middle class grows, but in some regions more than others. Pew Research Center. Accessed May 9, 2016.
  26. Greenberg, M. R., Sachsman, D. B., Sandman, P. M., & Salomone, K. L. (1989). Network evening news coverage of environmental risk. Risk Analysis, 9(1): 119–126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Grugel, J., & Riggirozzi, P. (2012). Post-neoliberalism in Latin America: Rebuilding and reclaiming the state after crisis. Development and Change, 43(1): 1–21.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Gudynas, E. (2010, January 21). The new extractivism of the 21st century: Ten urgent theses about extractivism in relation to current South American progressivism. Americas Program Report, Americas Policy Program. Accessed January 29, 2014.
  29. Guedes, O. (2000). Environmental issues in the Brazilian p. International Communication Gazette, 62(6): 537–554.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Haarstad, H., & Floysand, A. (2007). Globalization and the power of rescaled narratives: A case of opposition to mining in Tambogrande, Peru. Political Geography, 26: 289–308.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hallin, D., & Papathanassopoulos, S. (2002). Political clientelism and the media: Southern Europe and Latin America in comparative perspective. Media, Culture, & Society, 24(2): 175–195.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hansen, A. (1991). The media and the social construction of the environment. Media, Culture & Society, 13: 443–458.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Hansen, A. (Ed.). (1993). The mass media and environmental issues. Leicester: Leicester University Press.Google Scholar
  34. Hansen, A. (2000). Claims-making and framing in British newspaper coverage of the “Brent Spar” Controversy. In S. Allan, B. Adam, & C. Carter (Eds.), Environmental risks and the media (pp. 55–72). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  35. Hansen, A. (2011). Communication, media and environment: Towards reconnecting research on the production, content and social implications of environmental communication. International Communication Gazette, 73(1–2): 7–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Harlow, S. (2012). A political boss and the press: The impact on democracy of two Brazilian newspapers. Journalism, 13: 340–353.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Harrup, A. (2016, April 12). South America suffers from end of commodity boom. The Wall Street Journal. Accessed May 9, 2016.
  38. Hughes, S., & Lawson, C. (2005). The barriers to media opening in Latin America. Political Communication, 22: 9–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Jukofsky, D. (2000). El periodismo ambiental: Un especie en extincion. Chasqui, 70–74.Google Scholar
  40. Lester, L. (2010). Media and environment. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  41. Lester, L., & Hutchins, B. (Eds.). (2013). Environmental conflict and the media. New York: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  42. Lipschultz, R. (2004). Global environmental politics: Power, perspectives and practice. Washington, DC: CQ Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Liverman, D., & Vilas, S. (2006). Neoliberalism and the environment in Latin America. Annual Review of Environment Resources, 31: 327–363.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Llana, S. (2007, March 27). Bolivia’s vice president on indigenous rights, coca crops, and relations with the US. Christian Science Monitor. Accessed January 31, 2014).
  45. Lowe, P., & Morrison, D. (1984). Bad news or good news: Environmental politics and the mass media. Sociological Review, 32(1): 75–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Lowery-Evans, B. (2013, May 3). Images from the Amazon at the Belo Monte protest. International Rivers. Accessed February 3, 2014.
  47. Massarani, L., Buys, B., Amorim, L., & Veneu, F. (2005). Science journalism in Latin America: A case study of seven newspapers in the region. Journal of Science Communication, 4(3): 1–8.Google Scholar
  48. Massarani, L., & Buys, B. (2007). Science in the press in nine Latin American countries. Brazilian Journalism Research, 3: 77–96.Google Scholar
  49. Mazur, A. (2009). American generation of environmental warnings: Avian influenza and global warming. Research in Human Ecology, 16(1): 17–26.Google Scholar
  50. Mellado, C., Moreira, S., Lagos, C., & Hernández, M. (2012). Comparing journalism cultures in Latin America: The case of Chile, Brazil & Mexico. International Communication Gazette, 74: 60–79.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Mercado, M. (2012). Media representations of climate change in the Argentinian Press. Journalism Studies, 13(2): 193–209.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Miller, N. (2009). Environmental politics: Stakeholders, interests and policymaking (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  53. Miller, S. (2007). An environmental history of Latin America. New York: Cambridge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Moore, J. (Ed.). (2016). Anthropocene or Capitalocene? Nature, history and the crisis of capitalism. Dexter, MI: Kairos.Google Scholar
  55. Murdock, G., Petts, J., & Horlick-Jones, T. (2003). After amplification: Rethinking the role of the media in risk communication. In N. Pidgeon, R. Kasperson, & P. Slovic (Eds.), The social amplification of risk (pp. 156–178). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Nauman, T. (2005, April 13). Mexican right-to-know boosters should build bridges to environmental disclosure law. IRC Americas Program Discussion Paper. Accessed September 28, 2013.Google Scholar
  57. Pereira De Silva, P., & Rothman, F. (2011). Press representations of social movements: Brazilian resistance to the Candonga hydroelectric dam. Journal of Latin American Studies, 43: 725–754.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Petras, J., & Veltmeyer, H. (2014). Extractive imperialism in the Americas: Capitalism’s new frontier. Boston: Brill.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Pinto, J. (2008). Muzzling the watchdog: The case of disappearing watchdog journalism from Argentine mainstream news. Journalism, 9(6): 750–774.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Pinto, J. (2012). Legislating ‘rights for nature’ in Ecuador: The mediated social construction of human/nature dualisms. In A. Latta & H. Wittman (Eds.), Environment and citizenship in Latin America: Natures, subjects and struggles (pp. 227–242). New York: Berghahn Books.Google Scholar
  61. Plumwood, V. (2002). Feminism and the mastery of nature. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  62. Porto, M. (2007). TV news and political change in Brazil: The impact of democratization on TV Globo’s journalism. Journalism, 8(4): 363–384.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Prada, P. (2012, August 3). Special report: Brazil backslides on protecting the Amazon. Reuters. Accessed February 3, 2014.
  64. Reis, R. (2008). How Brazilian and North American newspapers frame the stem cell debate. Science Communication, 29(3): 316–334.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Robbins, P. (2004). Political ecology. Malden, MA: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  66. Roberts, K. (2002). Social inequalities without class cleavages in Latin America’s neoliberal era. Studies in Comparative International Development, 36(4): 3–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Robinson, E. E. (2002). Community frame analysis in love canal: Understanding messages in a contaminated community. Sociological Spectrum, 22: 139–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Roser-Renouf, C., & Nisbet, M. (2008). The measure of key behavioral science constructs in climate change research. International Journal of Sustainability Communication, 3: 37–95.Google Scholar
  69. Schamis, H. (1991). Reconceptualizing Latin American authoritarianism in the 1970s: From bureaucratic authoritarianism to neoconservatism. Comparative Politics, 23(2): 201–220.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Sood, R., Stockdale, G., & Rogers, E. M. (1987). How the news media operate in natural disasters. Journal of Communication, 37: 27–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Stetson, G. (2012). Oil politics and indigenous resistance in the peruvian amazon the rhetoric of modernity against the reality of coloniality. The Journal of Environment & Development, 21(1), 76–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Svampa, M. (2013). Resource extractivism and alternatives: Latin American perspectives on development. In M. Lang & D. Mokrani (Eds.), Beyond development: Alternative visions from Latin America (pp. 117–144). Quito: Fundacion Rosa Luxemburg.Google Scholar
  73. Székely, M., & Mendoza, P. (2016). Declining inequality in Latin America: Structural shift or temporary phenomenon? Oxford Development Studies. doi:  10.1080/13600818.2016.1140134.
  74. Takach, G. (2013). Selling nature in a resource-based economy: Romantic/extractive gazes and Alberta’s bituminous sands. Environmental Communication, 7(2): 211–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. Takahashi, B. (2011). Framing and sources: A study of mass media coverage of climate change during the V ALCUE. Public Understanding of Science, 20(4): 543–557.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Taylor, D. E. (2000). The rise of the environmental justice paradigm: Injustice framing and the social construction of environmental discourses. The American Behavioral Scientist, 43(4): 508–580.Google Scholar
  77. Timura, C. (2001). “Environmental conflict” and the social life of environmental security discourse. Anthropology Quarterly, 74(3): 104–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  78. Trumbo, C. (1996). Constructing climate change: Claims and frames in US news coverage of an environmental issue. Public Understanding of Science, 5: 269–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Tuchman, G. (1978). Making news. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  80. Veltmeyer, H. (2012). The natural resource dynamics of postneoliberalism in Latin America: New developmentalism or extractivist imperialism? Studies in Political Economy, 90(1): 57–85.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  81. Waisbord, S. (2000). Watchdog reporting in South America: News, accountability and democracy. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  82. Waisbord, S. (2002). Journalism, risk and patriotism. In B. Zelizer & S. Allen (Eds.), Journalism after September 11 (pp. 201–220). London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  83. Waisbord, S. (2010). Latin America. In P. Norris (Ed.), Public sentinel: News media and governance reform (pp. 305–328). Washington: World Bank.Google Scholar
  84. Waisbord, S. (2013). Contesting extractivism: Media and environmental citizenship in Latin America. In L. Lester & B. Hutchins (Eds.), Media and environmental conflict (pp. 105–124). New York: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  85. Waisbord, S., & Peruzzotti, E. (2009). The environmental story that wasn’t: Advocacy, journalism & the asambleismo movement in Argentina. Media, Culture & Society, 31(4): 691–709.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  86. Waisman, C. (2006). Autonomy, self-regulation and democracy: Tocquevillean-Gellnerian perspectives on civil society and the bifurcated state in Latin America. In R. Feinberg, C. Waisman, & L. Zamosc (Eds.), Civil society and democracy in Latin America (pp. 17–34). New York: Palgrave.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  87. World Bank. (2014a). Latin America: Middle class hits historic high. Accessed February 3, 2014.
  88. World Bank. (2014b). GDP Growth. Accessed January 31, 2014.
  89. Yates, J., & Bakker, K. (2014). Debating the “post-neoliberal turn” in Latin America. Progress in Human Geography, 38(1): 62–90. doi: 10.1177/0309132513500372.
  90. Zamith, R., Pinto, J., & Villar, M. (2013). Constructing climate change in the Americas: An analysis of U.S. and South American newspapers. Science Communication, 35(3): 334–357.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juliet Pinto
    • 1
  • Paola Prado
    • 2
  • J. Alejandro Tirado-Alcaraz
    • 3
  1. 1.Journalism and Mass CommunicationFlorida International UniversityNorth MiamiUSA
  2. 2.Communication DeptRoger Williams UniversityBristolUSA
  3. 3.Dept. Politics & International RelationsRoger Williams UniversityBristolUSA

Personalised recommendations