Amanpour is a good journalist because unlike some other journalists she isn’t only a representative of ABC (CNN or any other media company she worked for) but she is also an individual. She obviously has her own opinions, even though she (usually) doesn’t express her thoughts on debated issues and tries to hear both side of the story; she has an educated opinion on matters. Unlike criticism made on her journalism, from what I’ve read, I believe her lack of neutrality during the war in Yugoslavia is justified. She has stated: “Some people accused me of being pro-Muslim in Bosnia, but I realized that our job is to give all sides an equal hearing, but in cases of genocide you can’t just be neutral. You can’t just say, ‘Well, this little boy was shot in the head and killed in besieged Sarajevo and that guy over there did it, but maybe he was upset because he had an argument with his wife.’ No, there is no equality there, and we had to tell the truth.”
There are different types of interviews. There is the journalist interview in which the interviewee is interrogated and there is the celebrity interview in which the interviewer is just as important as the person interviewed (for example Frost—Nixon). Micheal Pachter didn’t want to do either, he wanted to be different; he wanted to be “empathic”. What he really wanted was to be an “agent of their (the interviewed people) self-revelation”, so that the interviewed person can have “the brush” of his/her self-portrait. Pachter believes that what makes an interview a good one isn’t the interviewed person’s intellect, but his/her energy and this energy isn’t the energy of being young. Pachter says the “life force” in a person fills
the room and makes the interview a successful one. Also another important point is making the interviewees think they have a story worth sharing. People who are modest are not good people to interview. The most important and rough task in interviewing a person is getting through all the barriers “they” have. We are all public and private beings. In an interview we don’t want only the public-self of a person, we need information about the inner-self as well. The interviewer has to break the shell, the “cocoon”. The key to doing so is asking the questions people have been waiting for their whole lives to be asked. Everybody in their lives is really waiting for people to ask them questions, so they can be truthful about who they are and how they became who they are. Therefore by being empathetic we can find the questions required to move the interview along, and that’s what makes a good interview.
I agree with Pachter because the most distinct difference between a successful and unsuccessful interview is the types of questions asked and how the interviewer avoids not being answered. As Pachter says the only way to find specific questions that help understand the life of a person is to be empathetic.