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From the 'Battle of Seattle' to the 'War on Terrorism' in The New York Times
Unformatted Document Text:  From the ‘Battle of Seattle’ to the ‘War on Terrorism’ 4 4 awareness of journalists—newspapers tend to support the status quo rather than question it (McCombs & Becker, 1979; Shoemaker, 1984; Soloski, 1989; Shoemaker & Reese, 1996). Scholars examining mass media coverage of protest groups have identified the “conflict- and-confrontation” frame as one that occurs regularly (Capella & Jamieson, 1997) and produced a substantial body of research demonstrating that news stories about social movements’ public activities tend to follow what has been called “the protest paradigm” (Chan & Lee, 1984), a specific kind of conflict frame. According to the protest paradigm, news reports tend to focus on protesters’ appearances rather than their issues, emphasize their violent actions rather than their social commentary, and downplay the movements’ effectiveness (Gitlin, 1980; Donohue, Tichenor and Olien, 1995; McLeod & Hertog, 1992, McLeod, 1995). With few exceptions, frame analyses rarely examine how social movement portrayals shift over time. In a study of the New York Times’ and Time magazine’s framing of the nuclear freeze movement, Robert Entman and Andrew Rojecki noted that the tenor of media coverage changed between 1980 and 1983 as the movement gathered adherents and entered the mainstream (1993, 159). And, although Gitlin defined frames as persistent patterns, he also noted that media portrayals of Students for a Democratic Society shifted in 1968 as some of the movement’s claims seemed to be verified; the New York Times and other establishment news organizations then turned more sympathetic to moderate antiwar activity (1980). A longitudinal approach is well suited to the conception of hegemonic ideology as an on- going process of incorporation and not of achievement or stagnation. Stuart Hall claimed that the press’s power in labeling or framing is at its maximum when social groups are unfamiliar and public perceptions ambiguous (in Murdock, 1973). Here, the length of a time for which a protest

Authors: Rauch, Jennifer., Chitrapu, Sunitha., Evans, John., Mwesige, Peter., Paine, Christopher. and Eastman, Susan.
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From the ‘Battle of Seattle’ to the ‘War on Terrorism’ 4
4
awareness of journalists—newspapers tend to support the status quo rather than question it
(McCombs & Becker, 1979; Shoemaker, 1984; Soloski, 1989; Shoemaker & Reese, 1996).
Scholars examining mass media coverage of protest groups have identified the “conflict-
and-confrontation” frame as one that occurs regularly (Capella & Jamieson, 1997) and produced
a substantial body of research demonstrating that news stories about social movements’ public
activities tend to follow what has been called “the protest paradigm” (Chan & Lee, 1984), a
specific kind of conflict frame. According to the protest paradigm, news reports tend to focus on
protesters’ appearances rather than their issues, emphasize their violent actions rather than their
social commentary, and downplay the movements’ effectiveness (Gitlin, 1980; Donohue,
Tichenor and Olien, 1995; McLeod & Hertog, 1992, McLeod, 1995).
With few exceptions, frame analyses rarely examine how social movement portrayals
shift over time. In a study of the New York Times’ and Time magazine’s framing of the nuclear
freeze movement, Robert Entman and Andrew Rojecki noted that the tenor of media coverage
changed between 1980 and 1983 as the movement gathered adherents and entered the
mainstream (1993, 159). And, although Gitlin defined frames as persistent patterns, he also
noted that media portrayals of Students for a Democratic Society shifted in 1968 as some of the
movement’s claims seemed to be verified; the New York Times and other establishment news
organizations then turned more sympathetic to moderate antiwar activity (1980).
A longitudinal approach is well suited to the conception of hegemonic ideology as an on-
going process of incorporation and not of achievement or stagnation. Stuart Hall claimed that the
press’s power in labeling or framing is at its maximum when social groups are unfamiliar and
public perceptions ambiguous (in Murdock, 1973). Here, the length of a time for which a protest


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