The Passive-Responsive Journalist: An Offensive Case of Immersion in the Danish Film Industry

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


This study examines a controversial piece of magazine journalism on cliquish culture in the Danish film industry, “Frygt og lede i Avedøre og omegn” [Fear and loathing in and around Avedøre] by René Fredensborg, which was featured in the Danish film magazine Ekko in 2011. The study identifies stylistic features that emerge as the reporter mixes playful Gonzo poses with injured personal testimony, ultimately blaming social forces or immersion as such for the consequences of his coverage. A personal narrative based on immersion would seem a promising way of exploring social dynamics in a small, Nordic, high-trust society such as Denmark’s, especially in the domain of arts and culture, in which the roles and interests of journalists and cultural actors tend to overlap. Fredensborg’s approach on this occasion, however, displays several pitfalls in the enactment of the dedicated, responsive style of engagement associated with literary journalism. Drawing on the trope of getting carried away, Fredensborg’s story showcases a peculiar, passive form of responsiveness that serves to renounce professional and personal responsibility.
Original languageEnglish
JournalLiterary Journalism Studies
Issue number1 (June) 2022
Pages (from-to)32-51
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

ID: 226914120