What is news? Why does news turn out like it does? What factors influence the creation, production, and dissemination of news? Cultural Meanings of News takes on these deceptively simple questions through an essential collection of seminal and contemporary studies by leaders in the fields of mass communication and media studies. Similar in format and purpose to editor Dan Berkowitz's award-winning Social Meanings of News, this new volume represents a conceptual update, a continuation of the discourse about the nature of news and how it comes to be, moving ideas ahead from the earlier tradition of sociological approaches to the more pervasive cultural perspectives that inform understandings about news. Cultural Meanings of News provides a carefully selected set of readings, organized into thematic areas that each probe a dimension of the literature: from sociological roots to cultural perspectives; news as narrative and cultural text; newswork as cultural ritual; news as cultural myth; news and its interpretive communities; news as a source and reflection of collective memory; toward the future of news research. This text-reader provides students and scholars with first-hand exposure to cultural approaches to the study of news, while also providing an organizing framework for understanding the commonalties and differences between threads in the research. The goals are to engage readers through guided immersion in the material.