Antonio Martella

War in Ukraine: The Italian newspapers' agenda on Facebook between convergences and divergences

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On February 24, 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, becoming the top priority issue for all Italian media. During war conflicts, media tends to align with their respective governments and national interests for several reasons, thus altering agendas and frames of events accordingly (Koltsova and Pashakhin, 2020). In this context, Italy represents an interesting case study. On one hand, the high degree of political parallelism characterizing the media ecosystem (Hallin and Mancini, 2004), along with historical ties between some political forces and Russia (Makarychev and Terry, 2020), would lead to hypothesize a heavily polarized media scenario in the narrative of the conflict. On the other hand, the analysis of information in the initial phase of the pandemic highlighted the media’s tendency to play a “service roleµ (Mazzoni et al., 2022), probably due to the rally around the flag process that also characterized the Italian context during the pandemic (Mazzoleni and Bracciale, 2021). The analysis of the main Italian newspapers on Facebook shows a tendency towards convergence of agendas during the early months of the conflict, with divergences in the presentation of specific themes such as President Zelensky’s requests to European countries and the subsequent debate on military aid..


  • Ukraine
  • Facebook
  • newspapers
  • political parallelism
  • agenda setting
  • topic modelling


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