Recounting Traumatic Secrets: Empathy and the Literary Journalist

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Journal Article
Journalism Practice, 2011, 5 (1), pp. 18 - 33
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The journalism industry has only recently begun to embrace reflective practice in response to trauma in journalists, but it substantially ignores empathy. This article examines six narratives of trauma subjects from the manuscript Speaking Secrets. Framing the subjectsâ recounts as a form of advocacy journalism, particular focus is given to the role of empathy in eliciting and retelling trauma stories, and its effects on the journalist. This article argues for greater discussion of empathy as an ethical tool of journalism within the industry and academy, and a remedy to public distrust, rather than a notion regarded by most as antithetical.
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