Skip to main content
×
×
Home

MEDIA EXPOSURE AND REGIME SUPPORT UNDER COMPETITIVE AUTHORITARIANISM: EVIDENCE FROM SOUTH KOREA

  • Joan E. Cho, Jae Seung Lee and B.K. Song
Abstract

This study explores whether and how exposure to mass media affects regime support in competitive authoritarian regimes. Using geographical and temporal variation in newspaper circulation and radio signal strength in South Korea under Park Chung Hee's competitive authoritarian rule (1961–1972), we find that greater exposure to media was correlated with more opposition to the authoritarian incumbent, but only when the government's control of the media was weaker. When state control of the media was stronger, the correlation between media exposure and regime support disappeared. Through a content analysis of newspaper articles, we also demonstrate that the regime's tighter media control is indeed associated with pro-regime bias in news coverage. These findings from the South Korean case suggest that the liberalizing effect of mass media in competitive authoritarian regimes is conditional on the extent of government control over the media.

Copyright
Corresponding author
(bksong@hanyang.ac.kr, corresponding author)
References
Hide All
Adena, Maja, Enikolopov, Ruben, Petrova, Maria, Santarosa, Veronica, and Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina. 2015. “Radio and the Rise of Nazis in Prewar Germany.” Quarterly Journal of Economics 130 (4): 18851939.
Bennett, W. Lance. 1998. “The Media and Democratic Development: The Social Basis of Political Communication.” In Communicating Democracy: The Media and Political Transitions, edited by O'Neil, Patrick, 195207. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.
Blaydes, Lisa. 2011. Elections and Distributive Politics in Mubarak's Egypt. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Brownlee, Jason. 2007. Authoritarianism in an Age of Democratization. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Chang, Eric CC, Golden, Miriam A. and Hill, Seth J.. 2010. “Legislative Malfeasance and Political Accountability.” World Politics 62 (2): 177220.
Chang, Paul. 2015. Protest Dialectics: State Repression and South Korea's Democracy Movement, 1970–1979. Stanford: Stanford University Press.
Costas-Pérez, Elena, Solé-Ollé, Albert, and Sorribas-Navarro, Pilar. 2012. “Corruption Scandals, Voter Information, and Accountability.” European Journal of Political Economy 28 (4): 469–84.
Dalton, Russell J. 1994. “Communists and Democrats: Democratic Attitudes in the two Germanies.” British Journal of Political Science 24: 469–93.
DellaVigna, Stefano, Enikolopov, Ruben, Mironova, Vera, Petrova, Maria, and Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina. 2014. “Cross-Border Effects of Foreign Media: Serbian Radio and Nationalism in Croatia.” American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 6 (3): 103132.
Diamond, Larry. 1993. Political Culture and Democracy in Developing Countries. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner.
Enikolopov, Ruben, Petrova, Maria, and Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina. 2011. “Media and Political Persuasion: Evidence from Russia.” American Economic Review 101 (7): 32533285.
Fergusson, Leopold. 2014. “Media Markets, Special Interests, and Voters.” Journal of Public Economics 109: 1326.
Gandhi, Jennifer. 2008. Political Institutions under Dictatorship. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Greitens, Sheena C. 2016. Dictators and their Secret Police: Coercive Institutions and State Violence Under Authoritarianism. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Grix, Jonathan. 2000. The Role of the Masses in the Collapse of the GDR. New York: St. Martin's.
Gurr, Ted R. 1970. Why Men Rebel. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Hirschman, Albert O. 1993. “Exit, Voice, and the Fate of the German Democratic Republic: An Essay in Conceptual History.” World Politics 45 (2): 173202.
Howard, Philip N., Duffy, Aiden, Freelon, Deen, Hussain, Muzammil, Mari, Will, and Mazaid, Marwa. 2011. “Opening Closed Regimes: What Was the Role of Social Media during the Arab Spring?” Working Paper.
Hufford, George A. 2002. The ITS Irregular Terrain Model, Version 1.2.2: The Algorithm. Institute for Telecommunication Sciences, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.
Huntington, Samuel. 1996. “Democracy's Third Wave.” In The Global Resurgence of Democracy, edited by Diamond, Larry and Plattner, Marc F.. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Im, Hyug Baeg. 2011. “The Origins of the Yushin Regime: Machiavelli Unveiled.” In The Park Chung Hee Era: The Transformation of South Korea , edited by Kim, Byung-Kook and Vogel, Ezra F., 233261. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Jarausch, Konrad. 1994. The Rush to German Unity. New York: Oxford University Press.
Joo, Dong Hwang, Kim, Hye Shik, and Park, Young Kyu. 1997. Understanding the History of Korean Media [Han'guk ǒllonsa ǔi ihae]. Seoul: Chǒn'guk Ǒllon Nodong Chohap Yǒnmaeng.
Kern, Holger Lutz. 2011. “Foreign Media and Protest Diffusion in Authoritarian Regimes: The Case of the 1989 East German Revolution.” Comparative Political Studies 44 (9): 11791205.
Kim, Hak-Chon. 2007. Insights and Innovation of Broadcasting in South Korea [Han'guk ǔi sǒngch'al kwa kaehyǒk]. Paju: Han'guk Haksul Chǒngbo.
Kim, Ju Eon. 2009. Media Control in Korea [Han'guk ǔi ǒllon t'ongje: majimak kirok igil yǒmwǒn hamyǒ]. Seoul: Ribuk.
King, Gary, Pan, Jennifer, and Roberts, Margaret E.. 2013. “How Censorship in China Allows Government Criticisms but Silences Collective Expression.” American Political Science Review 107 (2): 118.
Kuran, Timur. 1991. “Now Out of Never: The Element of Surprise in the East European Revolution of 1989.” World Politics 44 (1): 748.
Kwak, Ki-Sung. 2012. Media and Democratic Transition in South Korea. New York: Routledge.
Larreguy, Horacio A., Marshall, John, and Snyder, James M.. 2014. “Revealing Malfeasance: How Local Media Facilitates Electoral Sanctioning of Mayors in Mexico.” Working Paper.
Lawson, J. Chappell H. 2002. Building the Fourth Estate: Democratization and the Rise of a Free Press in Mexico. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Lee, Byeong-Cheon. 2005. Developmental Dictatorship and The Park Chung-Hee Era: The Shaping of Modernity in the Republic of Korea. Paramus, NJ: Homa & Sekey Books.
Lee, Myung-sik. 2010. The History of the Democratization Movement in Korea. Seoul: Korea Foundation Democracy.
Lerner, Daniel. 1964. The Passing of Traditional Society: Modernizing the Middle East. New York: Free Press of Glencoe.
Levitsky, Steven and Way, Lucan. 2002. “Elections Without Democracy: The Rise of Competitive Authoritarianism.” Journal of Democracy 13 (2): 5165.
Levitsky, Steven and Way, Lucan. 2010. Competitive Authoritarianism: Hybrid Regimes After the Cold War. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Magaloni, Beatriz. 2006. Voting for Autocracy: Hegemonic Party Survival and its Demise in Mexico. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Marshall, Monty G., Gurr, Ted Robert, and Jaggers, Keith. 2014. Polity IV Project: Political Regime Characteristics and Transitions, 1800–2013. Center for Systemic Peace. www.systemicpeace.org/inscrdata.html. Accessed October 15, 2014.
McMillan, John and Zoido, Pablo. 2004. “How to Subvert Democracy: Montesinos in Peru.” Journal of Economic Perspectives 18 (4): 6992.
MCI (Ministry of Culture and Information) [Munhwa Kongbobu]. 1968. The Current Situations of Korean Broadcasting [Han'guk Pangsong Hyǒnhwang]. Seoul: MCI.
NIS (National Intelligence Service) [Kukka Chǒngbowǒn]. 2007. Communication with the Past [Kwagǒwa taehwa mirae ǔi sǒngch'al] Vol. V: Media and Labor. Seoul: NIS.
Olken, Benjamin A. 2009. “Do Television and Radio Destroy Social Capital? Evidence from Indonesian Villages.” American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 1 (4): 133.
Olukotun, Ayo. 2002. “Authoritarian State, Crisis of Democratization and the Underground Media in Nigeria.” African Affairs 101: 317–42.
Opp, Karl-Dieter and Gern, Christiane. 1993. “Dissident Groups, Personal Networks, and Spontaneous Cooperation: The East German Revolution of 1989.” American Sociological Review 58 (5): 659680.
Opp, Karl-Dieter and Roehl, Wolfgang. 1990. “Repression, Micromobilization, and Political Protest.” Social Forces 69 (2): 521547.
Rawnsley, Gary D., and Rawnsley, Ming-Yeh T.. 1998. “Regime Transition and the Media in Taiwan.” Democratization 5 (2): 106–24.
Rohrschneider, Robert. 1994. “Report from the Laboratory: The Influence of Institutions on Political Elites’ Democratic Values in Germany.” American Political Science Review 89: 927941.
Rustow, Dankwart A. 1990. “Democracy: A Global Revolution?Foreign Affairs 69 (4): 7591.
Schedler, Andreas. 2002. “The Menu of Manipulation.” Journal of Democracy 13 (2): 3650.
Snow, David A., Vliegenthart, Rens, and Corrigall-Brown, Catherine. 2007. “Framing the French Riots: A Comparative Study of Frame Variations.” Social Forces 86 (2): 385415.
Song, Kon-Ho, Choi, Min-Ji, Park, Ji-Dong, Yoon, Deok-Han, Son, Seok-Chun, and Kang, Myung-Gu. 2000. Understanding 100 Years of Korean Media [Han'guk ǒllon paro pogi 100-yǒn]. Seoul: Tasǒt Sure.
Stockmann, Daniela and Gallagher, Mary E.. 2011. “Remote Control: How the Media Sustain Authoritarian Rule in China.” Comparative Political Studies 44 (4): 436–67.
Strang, David, and Soule, Sarah A.. 1998. “Diffusion in Organizations and Social Movements: From Hybrid Corn to Poison Pills.” Annual Review of Sociology 24: 265290.
Sükösd, Miklos S. 2000. “Democratic Transformation and the Mass Media in Hungary: From Stalinism to Democratic Consolidation.” In Democracy and the Media, edited by Gunther, Richard and Mughan, Anthony. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Yi, Chaeo. 2011. Han'guk haksaeng undongsa: 1945–1979-nyŏn [History of Korean Student Movements: 1945–1979]. Seoul: P'ara Puksŭ.
Youm, Kyu Ho. 1996. Press Law in South Korea. Ames: Iowa State University Press.
Watanabe, Haruko. 1964. “South Korean Press, 1945–.” Freedom of Information Center Publication 119.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of East Asian Studies
  • ISSN: 1598-2408
  • EISSN: 2234-6643
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-east-asian-studies
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords

Type Description Title
PDF
Supplementary materials

Cho supplementary material
Online Appendix

 PDF (57 KB)
57 KB

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed