By Helena Williams
James Rodgers has covered conflicts in Chechnya, Gaza and Iraq for the BBC (Photo: Helena Williams)
Like many former foreign correspondents, James Rodgers, who has covered conflicts in Chechnya, Gaza and Iraq, has written a book based on his experiences. But instead of taking what is fast becoming the regular line of war journalism memoirs – tales of near misses and narrow escapes – Rodger’s latest offering is an academic, in-depth study of the role of journalism in wartime. It is a fitting topic for the post he has taken as lecturer at City University London, one of the world’s leading journalism schools.
Q. Journalism and academia don’t usually go hand in hand. Why did you write an academic book rather than a punchy memoir?
My main motivation is to share with the next generation of journalists what I wish I knew 20 years ago.
Journalists don’t read much about what academics write about, but I used my experience as research material. I wanted to write a book which would give a greater understanding of the process [of war reporting].
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