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The digital animation of literary journalism

Research paper by Jacobson, S, Marino, J, Gutsche, R. E.

Indexed on: 17 May '16Published on: 13 May '16Published in: Journalism



Abstract

Since The New York Times published Snow Fall in 2012, media organizations have produced a growing body of similar work characterized by the purposeful integration of multimedia into long-form journalism. In this article, we argue that just as the literary journalists of the 1960s attempted to write the nonfiction equivalent of the great American novel, journalists of the 2010s are using digital tools to animate literary journalism techniques. To evaluate whether this emerging genre represents a new era of literary journalism and to what extent it incorporates new techniques of journalistic storytelling, we analyze 50 long-form multimedia journalism packages published online from August 2012 to December 2013. We argue that this new wave of literary journalism is characterized by executing literary techniques through multiple media and represents a gateway to linear storytelling in the hypertextual environment of the Web.