N10(a) - Media Frames, Gender, and Politics
Date: Jun 5 | Heure: 10:30am to 12:00pm | Location: SWING 305
Chair/Président/Présidente : Leah Levac (University of Guelph)
Discussant/Commentateur/Commentatrice : Cheryl Collier (University of Windsor)
Nice Guys and Competent Gals: Gendered Media Representations of Premiers’ Leadership Abilities in Canada and Australia: Angelia Wagner (University of Alberta), Linda Trimble (University of Alberta), Jennifer Curtin (University of Auckland), Meagan Auer (University of Alberta)
Abstract: How do the news media describe and evaluate the leadership abilities of women and men government leaders? To investigate the gendered mediation of political leadership, we look to the subnational level of government in Australia and Canada, where sizeable numbers of women have served as premier of a state or provincial government. News coverage of 11 women premiers and their male predecessors, all of whom held office in Canada and Australia between 2001 and 2017, is analyzed, with a focus on key leadership skills and attributes. A quantitative and qualitative analysis of 846 news stories explores how journalists discussed the competence, strength, intelligence, experience, compassion, likeability, and rationality of new premiers in the first seven days after being selected for the position. Content analysis of the articles determines the extent to which journalists discuss leadership abilities for women and men, while discourse analysis explores the nature of that discussion and its gendered dimensions. By examining gendered discourses on leadership qualities, our study advances knowledge about the discursive barriers that women face when establishing their legitimacy as political leaders in Western democratic countries.
Media Representation of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women: A Comparison of ‘Newsworthy’ Victims and Others: Elisha Corbett (Queen's University)
Abstract: This paper examines media representation of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG). Indigenous women and girls receive disproportionately less media coverage than their non-Indigenous counterparts in the number of and details in news reports. This coverage is also overwhelmingly more negative in tone. Further, MMIWG are consistently framed as “high-risk” individuals who chose to engage in precarious behaviour, and as a result are to blame for the violence against them. However, there is a significant gap in the literature: what are the differences in media representation between Indigenous women? Specifically, in this paper I ask: what are the differences in tone, coverage, and content of media representation between different media frames of MMIWG? Specifically, what are the differences between media representation of missing and murdered Indigenous women who engage in “high-risk” lifestyles compared to Indigenous women who do not? Further, what does media representation of MMIWG, and the differences in media representation between Indigenous women, suggests about Canada’s non-Indigenous population’s attitudes and opinions of MMIWG and ideals about Indigenous womanhood? Using an automated content analysis of newsprint reports from 2000-2010, the principal finding in this paper is that are significant differences in media representation between murdered Indigenous women who engage in “high-risk” lifestyles compared to Indigenous women who do not.
Beyond Cooptation and Resistance: Explaining the Relationship between Anti-Violence and Feminist Media Engagement Strategies and Neoliberalism: Bailey Gerrits (Queen's University)
Abstract: Neoliberalism strongly shapes gendered violence media discourses in Canada. Yet, anti-violence media advocacy on social media and with traditional news organizations is stronger than ever. The question becomes: what role does neoliberalism play in shaping anti-violence media advocacy? I answer this question by weaving together a content and discourse analysis of a large sample of news stories about one form of gendered violence – domestic violence – from 2014 to 2016 in online and print newspapers with in-depth interviews with over 30 anti-violence advocates and over 50 journalists about the news production process in Canada. I develop a nuanced categorization of the relationships between anti-violence media engagement and neoliberalism, moving beyond the cooptation-resistance dichotomy. I detail four types of anti-violence media engagement: resistance, compliance, cooptation, and non-participation. While there is strong evidence that anti-violence media engagement is associated with discourses of broader social inequality and resistance to neoliberal individualization, there is also evidence that some anti-violence media engagement advances carceral visions. In some cases, news producers coopt anti-violence and feminist analyses. However, I also argue that often this anti-violence rhetoric is wrapped up in white feminism and carceral feminism that see increased incarceration of often black and brown bodies as the solution to gendered violence. While the fears around feminist cooptation positions feminist activists as dupes, this re-articulation requires attention to the ways some anti-violence and feminist advocates sometimes actively collude to advance carceral and individualized discourses of gendered violence.