Celebrities in Haiti and depiction of their relief efforts in media

University essay from Malmö högskola/Fakulteten för kultur och samhälle (KS)

Author: Erika Konovalova; [2016]

Keywords: haiti; celebrities;

Abstract: ABSTRACTIn the last decade, celebrities’ philanthropic activism has emerged into the global phenomena. In order to raise the awareness about the global problems and suffering of others, as well as increase public funding of humanitarian organizations, celebrity figures are becoming ever more representative for the humanitarianism issues between the global North and South. Whereas celebrity interventions were previously considered to be important for media studies only, growing body of academic research admits it significance for the international development studies and global issues of communication. Through analysis of the most prominent researchers in the field of celebritized involvement in the global development, as well as independent discourse and semiotic analysis, this thesis proves the emergence of celebrities as new global actors of the development. The main objective of this paper is to both evaluate and debate on how celebritized humanitarians are depicted in the media in comparison to Haitians in immediate aftermath of earthquake in 2010. The results show that despite good intentions, the analysis shows that the images, which are being manifested by the celebrities within the North-South relations, are heavily criticized for inhibiting the development of Haiti and expanding the global inequality. Nevertheless, celebrities are not acting in own interests only and are suppose to present themselves in accordance to political forces and societal frames of reality of the global North.

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