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Acknowledgments First and foremost, this book owes its existence to the fifteen people who agreed to talk with me for hours on end about their lives and about politics and news media. They were unfailingly accommodating and forthcoming when there was little pressing reason for them to be, other than their kindness and willingness to help. They have my appreciation and gratitude. I would also like to thank the many people, who also should remain nameless, who helped me by suggesting friends, family, and colleagues as potential research participants. This book originated in my doctoral dissertation research at New York University. I would like to thank the faculty, staff, and students of the Department of Culture and Communication for providing me with the learning environment in which that research took shape. In particular I would like to thank Professor Todd Gitlin, whose mentoring and continuing example of rigorous, engaged thinking and scholarship have been an inspiration to me. I would also like to thank Professors JoEllen Fisherkeller, Christine Nystrom, Ted Magder, Salvatore Fallica, Terence Moran, Joy Gould Boyum, Robin Means Coleman, and the late Herbert Schiller, who visited often from the University of California, San Diego. Neil Postman, longtime department chair and renowned author, passed away shortly before I finished this book. His wisdom, wit, and generosity were a godsend to me, and along with countless others at NYU and elsewhere, I will miss him. I also appreciated greatly my fellow graduate students at NYU for their kinship, stimulation, and advice, especially Evan Baily, Lila Bauman, Brian Cogan, Rosemarie Conforti, Michael Grabowski, Jon Hyde, Tony Kelso, Mark Lipton, Rick Pieto, Janet Sternberg, Kimberly Sultze, and Laura Tropp-Grabowski. And finally, my thanks to the School of Education at NYU, which supported this work early on with a Dean’s Grant for Graduate Student Research. Many others also aided me in various ways throughout the research and writing of this book, whether they knew it or not. I would like to remember and offer my heartfelt thanks to my grandmother, the late May Cecil, as well as the late Milton Klein. I also thank Emily Adler, Melinda Barnard, David Buckingham, Elizabeth Burch, Ralph Crevoshay, Michael Litle, Sam Nelson, Jonah Raskin, Craig Reinarman, and Cathryn Stuckey. Thanks also to my editor at SUNY Press, Priscilla Ross, and to the readers of the manuscript. Lastly, I would like to thank my family. My parents, Nico and Kitty, and my brother Joe, have been a fount of loving encouragement and guidance . My wife Michelle has further supported and nurtured me on a daily basis in myriad, wonderful ways both trivial and substantial, and our daughter Elizabeth is an unending source of inspiration and joy. Their love gave this book life. viii ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ...


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