Revisiting Tangentopoli 30 Years Later: Why Have the Media Shifted from Party Collateralism to Adversarial Reporting?


  • Roberto Mincigrucci Department of Political Science, University of Perugia
  • Matteo Gerli Department of International Human and Social Science, University for Foreigners of Perugia
  • Marco Mazzoni Department of Political Science, University of Perugia



Tangentopoli, Corruption, Mediated scandal, Journalistic field, Adversarial Reporting


17th February, 2022 marked the 30th anniversary of Tangentopoli, the most important corruption scandal in Italian history. In this study we will attempt to reconstruct the controversial role of the media in the scandal in order to provide insights that help to understand the existing link between journalism and corruption. Based on a Bourdieusian perspective, we will try to see how various factors, exogenous and endogenous, have produced pressures both in terms of autonomy and heteronomy to the journalistic field. The proposed analysis will be both theoretical and empirical, with data retrieved from journalistic coverage of the time. Unlike media- and political-centric approaches, which tend to produce monocausal explanations, the article sheds light on the interplay of different factors (political, economic, judicial and media-related) that made the scandal of Tangentopoli possible.


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How to Cite

Mincigrucci, R., Gerli, M., & Mazzoni, M. (2023). Revisiting Tangentopoli 30 Years Later: Why Have the Media Shifted from Party Collateralism to Adversarial Reporting?. Sociologica, 17(2), 149–173.