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This study operationalized the Four Worlds model for mass media values in a new context — that of a foreign-language newspaper serving a recent-immigrant community within a First World society, namely a Hispanic community in central Arkansas, in the United States. The study established baseline representations of previously described “First World” and “Fourth World” values in a mainstream central Arkansas newspaper, and in Cherokee and Koori newspapers. The study speculated that the central Arkansas Hispanic community exists with a measure of physical and cultural separation from mainstream society — arising from informal barriers such as socioecomomic status, residential neighborhoods, language, and racism — and that this separation is analogous to the separation of a Fourth World society from its mainstream society. Accordingly, the study predicted that El Latino content would bear greater similarity with the Fourth World baseline than with the First World baseline. The hypothesis was substantially but not wholly born out. El Latino tracked the Fourth World baselines on six of the thirteen values surveyed, First and Fourth World, and results were inconclusive on six more values, two because El Latino fell between the baselines. El Latino tracked the First World baseline on only one value: First World “oddity.” It was hoped that this study will stimulate further research into similarities between immigrant groups and Fourth World communities, that they might share in the development of innovative strategies in their common pursuit of socioeconomic development for their peoples while preserving their cultural integrity and ethnic identity.


Originally published in 2011 by the Journal of Global Mass Communication.