CBC Television Network

Journal, The

Network: CBC Television Network

Broadcast Run: 1982 to 1992

Broadcast Medium: Television

Aired weeknights from January 11, 1982 to October 30, 1992

When the CBC decided to move its flagship newscast, The National, from 11 PM to 10PM, it was considered programming suicide in the world of television. To follow a 20-minute newscast with a new 38-minute current affairs program with two women as hosts was thought to be even more risky. Yet it was the determination of Mark Starowicz, creator of As It Happens and Peter Herrndorf, Head of English Radio & TV, to move ahead with a program that would respect its audience and offer viewers an alternative to the regular shows on network television.

Changes in television technology made The Journal a program of immediacy and spontaneity. Video was replacing film as the major visual news gathering format, which offered a much faster and easier method of telling a story. By hiring Barbara Frum, who had established her credentials as a tough interviewer on As It Happens, the show was assured of being dynamic and informative. This combination of form and content made for revealing television. Frum often interviewed heads of state, including Nelson Mandela shortly after his release in 1990, Jimmy Carter, and Margaret Thatcher. She also interviewed former Canadian Prime Ministers including Brian Mulroney, Pierre Trudeau and Jean Chretien. These interviews were most notable for Frum’s fearless niche style of asking hard questions. The Journal was Frum’s show from the start. She died in March 1992 of leukemia.

For more about her career visit:

In 1992, The National/Journal combination was replaced by Prime Time News, which was designed to incorporate elements of straight news stories with in-depth analysis.
[See: Prime Time News]

Executive Producer: Mark Starowicz

Original hosts: Barbara Frum and Mary Lou Finlay. Also hosted by Bill Cameron, Paul Griffin, Susan Harada, Peter Kent, Terence McKenna, Ann Medina, Keith Morrison, Brian Stewart and Nancy Wilson.

Written by John Corcelli – August, 2006