• Charlotte Nielsen
4. term, Public Administration and Social Science (Master Programme)
The media shows us the world through pictures, sounds and writing. It helps us to create an understanding of the world we live in, and it also helps us to create an understanding of ourselves and our fellow creatures. In other words, the media participates in forming our identity and self understanding, as well as socializing us. The issue of immigrants has been a part of the public and political agenda for the past two decades. The media play a crucial role in both reflecting but also affecting the public opinion-forming. Surveys show that the majority of the Danish population has little or no personal contact with immigrants, which places the media in a crucial position of producing information to the majority about the immigrant minority. This thesis is about the representation of ethnic minority women as given through the news paper media. Ethnic minority women are a greatly overlooked group in existing literature and research. Also research show that ethnic minority women themselves state the media as a barrier for integration in the Danish society, this argues for an examination of the representation of ethnic minority women in the Danish media. More specifically the news paper media are chosen as research area. The method used in the thesis is an inductive research method, which combines a quantitative content analysis with a qualitative frame analysis. The content analysis examines the extent and character of the representation of ethnic minority women in three Danish news papers: Jyllands Posten, Politiken and Ekstra Bladet. The purpose of the content analysis is to provide a representative picture of the representation of ethnic minority women in Danish news papers, but also to serve as a qualified basis for selection of articles for a more thorough analysis given in the frame-analysis. The content analysis shows that ethnic minority women are represented seldom and one-sidedly in news papers, and that they generally are spoken of instead of with. Also, the analysis shows that the angle in the representation is mainly positive, and that the most common topics are ‘integration on the labor market’, ‘veils’, ‘forced marriages’ and ‘political participation’. For the frame-analysis articles about ‘political participation’ are chosen. By examining each of the chosen articles through five simple questions, one is able to identify similarities and differences between the articles and hereby one can identify frames or understandings of the political participation of ethnic minority women as provided by the different news paper articles. The frame-analysis shows that three frames can be identified. One frame questions the participation of ethnic minority women in Danish politics and asks, whether can and want to separate religion and politics when participating in politics. A second frame problematizes the debate about the veil as well as the under representation of ethnic minority women in Danish politics, and it defends freedom of speech. A third frame portrays ethnic minority women as bridge builders in politics between Danes and immigrants, between Muslims and democrats. All though the frame-analysis is about the topic ‘political participation’ a considerable part of the analysis concerns the Muslim veil. The veil represents dissimilarity between ethnic minority women and the Danish society. The veil is primarily seen as an obstacle for political participation. The media analysis in this thesis gives ground to discuss theoretical concepts of citizenship, rights and possibilities, equality, recognition of differences, gender equality and multiculturalism. Primarily, the analysis highlights the challenges the modern, democratic and multiethnic society faces in how to combine social equality with recognition of cultural differences.
Publication date2008
Number of pages75
Publishing institutionAAU
ID: 13552731