The book „Political Communication and European Parliamentary Elections in Times of Crisis. Perspectives from Central and South-Eastern Europe“ was published in 2017 by Palgrave Macmillan and it consists of 381 pages.
The compilers and editors are Ruxandra Boicu – Associate Professor in the Faculty of Journalism and Communication Studies, University of Bucharest, Romani; Silvia Branea – PhD in Social Psychology from the Romanian Academy of Science, University of Bucharest ;Adriana Stefanel – Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Journalism and Communication Studies, University of Bucharest.
The book is a part of the series Political Campaigning and Communication and it has 3 publisher numbers, which show the modern publishing approach of Palgrave Macmillan: ISBN 978-1-137-58590-5, ISBN 978-1-137-58591-2 (eBook), DOI 10.1057/978-1-137-58591-2.
It includes an introduction named: Introduction: Proposal of a Framework for the 2014 European Parliament Elections and Campaigns in Central and Eastern Europe” and it was written by Silvia Branea and Ruxandra Boicu; representation of the editors and authors; the list of tables and the index.
The book is divided into 4 parts:
- Media Coverage and Political Marketing;
- A Second-Order Campaign;
- European vs. National Agenda;
- Ideological Premises, Candidates’ Recruitment, Vote Results.
It is a collection of 19 articles. The contributors are Agnieszka Stepinska, Ivanka Mavrodieva, Bartlomiej Lodzki and Anna Paluch, Gordana Vilovic, Ingrida Inikaite Jakuntavicene, Jakub Charvat, Silvia Branea, Ruxandra Boicu, Olga Gyárfášová, Bolgarka Koller, Ilona Švihlíková, Kryštof Kruliš, Marzena Cichosz, Robert Alberski, Dariusz Skrzypinski, Otto Eibl and Michal Pink, Petr Just, Adriana Stefanel.
The editors and authors are represented completely and properly. The collection is a broad-based description and an in-depth analysis of communication at institutional level, during elections, in the media-online media, social networks.
The study covers campaigning, political communication, political marketing, media communication, crises and crisis communication.
It is reasonable to conclude that the book is a large-scale study in the fields of political science, media science, and communications science. The achievement is a result of extensive knowledge of the political situation in Europe and individual countries over the past few years. The changes in the media, including online media (social networks), have emerged. The legal parameters of the European parliamentary elections have been established in the papers. The attitudes of voters have been studied by the researchers from members of 6 countries (Poland, Czech Republic, Rumania, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, and Croatia etc.) of the European Union. The results of the research are published by authors from different universities of the same country (for example in Poland – research units in Warsaw, Wroclaw, in the Czech Republic – universities in Prague, Brno). These facts are proof of a solid scientific interest and tradition in the fields of political communication in these countries, for example Universities in Brno and Prague in the Czech Republic.
The article titled Media Rhetoric and Virtual Communication in Bulgaria is written by Ivanka Mavrodieva (Mavrodieva 2017: 29-42) and it is dedicated to research of the pre-election campaign for the members of the European Parliament in the Republic of Bulgaria in 2017.
Among the most important characteristics of the fundamental and extremely useful research on the communication are the precision, the solid proofs, and the examples from different European countries (Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Lithuania, Romania, Bulgaria, and Croatia). The texts include sources of additional information and a base for comparison.
I would like to express my respect for the scientific traditions and the theoretical heritage, for the achievements of the other scholars, who are conducting research in different countries on the processes of society, the media and the development of institutions in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. On the one hand, a historical approach is used in examining the pursuit of research developments in the countries and individual scholars. On the other hand, the interdisciplinary approach has been applied effectively to analyse the topics from different scientific angles: election for representatives in the European Parliament, candidates for MEPs (Members of the EU Parliament) and their behaviour in the media (social media). And, the achievements of different types of political communication and various discourses have been taken into account.
I would also like to say, that the book is a product of the work between established scientific networks with representatives from different universities across Europe. It is because of the excellent skills of the editors and the Publishing House Palgrave Macmillan that such a large-scale study is organized .Also, the precision of the editing and the practical applicability of the research results in the fields of policy, media, and public relations.
In conclusion, the book “Political Communication and European Parliamentary Elections in Times of Crisis. Perspectives from Central and South-Eastern Europe“ has methodological and practical contributions. The authors from different countries demonstrate a serious scientific interest; they formulate topical research questions and apply an interesting approach, drawing conclusions on political and media communication. The editors -Ruxandra Boicu, Silvia Branea and Adriana Stefanel and Palgrave Macmillan Publishing show capabilities in conceptualizing significant topics from scientific standpoints and presenting innovative models of research of current political phenomena and processes taking place in the countries of Europe.
The book is extremely useful for politicians, journalists, as well as for students from departments of the European Studies, Political Studies, Media Studies and Public Relations.
Desislava Antova – PhD student in the field of Rhetoric and Public Communication, Faculty of Philosophy, Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”
Rhetoric and Communications E-journal, Issue 29, July 2017, rhetoric.bg/, journal.rhetoric.bg, ISSN 1314-4464