In these uncertain times, all one has to do is glance at the front page to be reminded that war reporting is an issue of vital importance to American democracy. With the recent embedding of more than 600 journalists with U.S. and British troops during the war in Iraq, Americans witnessed the sights and sounds of the battlefield up-close for the first time in decades. Not since the war in Vietnam have correspondents played such a significant role in parsing war information, and their very visibility during Operation Iraqi Freedom has generated more discussion about wartime journalism than this country has seen in some time. As a result, the themes and issues explored in Reporting America as War are more timely and relevant then ever before.
Over three dramatic and compelling hours, Reporting America at War will illuminate the myriad complexities that have shaped the war correspondents craft in the 20th century — from access to the ethical considerations raised by patriotism, from the challenges posed by paralyzing danger to the changes wrought by new technology. Throughout, the series will explore how we as a nation understand war, how the conflicts of the last 100 years have been remembered and recounted and understood.
The film also traces the changing shape of the media in this country, its evolution from print to radio to television to the Internet, and the impact of those shifts on the way war has been reported.
The educational activities in this section will provide high school social studies, media education and language arts teachers, as well as college journalism and communication educators with extensive lesson plans, resource materials, and discussion questions to introduce students to the world of war correspondence.
Reporting America at War offers students invaluable insights as it allows them to experience the life of a war reporter through the lens and the experiences of such noted journalists such as Christiane Amanpour, Walter Cronkite, David Halberstam, Chris Hedges and Morley Safer. The learning materials are designed to engage students in hands-on activities that stimulate them, and, most importantly, encourage critical thinking in the classroom.