Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program



Film, Theatre, and Communication Arts

Major Professor

Graves, Kevin

Second Advisor

Overton, John Hamp

Third Advisor

McGowan-Hartmann, John


Since 1927 international broadcasters have spanned oceans and transcended borders through the use of shortwave radio. In the beginning of the 21st century, some longtime shortwave stations have sharply cut back their English language services, particularly to North America and the Pacific region; at least one station has signed off forever. This paper examines the history of shortwave broadcasting--how it came to be, how it was used and by whom. Through interviews with broadcasters and listeners, it also explores the nature of the shortwave "experience"--especially how shortwave listening is different from listening to other media. Finally, this paper looks at what forces have precipitated such rapid and drastic changes in an 80-year old medium, why some adherents say new technologies are not necessarily suitable substitutes for shortwave, and what the near future holds for international radio broadcasting.


The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.