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Media Depictions of Environmental Harm

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Abstract:

Within the literature examining media depictions of crime little attention has been paid to the ways harms against the environment have been depicted. Using a green criminological lens, this paper begins to fill this gap by examining the case of mercury-contaminated fish as depicted in the Globe and Mail and the New York Times from 2003 through 2008. Using qualitative content analysis we examine the construction of responsibility for the mercury contamination and for mitigating the attendant risks. We find that in explaining the contamination of fish both newspapers problematize the regulation of mercury-releasing industries by the state and pay a great deal of attention to the responsibility the state has to inform the public about the risks. However, little attention is paid to the responsibility of the mercury-releasing industries, the commercial fish industry, restaurants and supermarkets to protect consumers. The bulk of the attention is paid to the responsibility of individual consumers to limit the amount of mercury-rich fish they consume. These media depictions simultaneously foster a sense of individualized responsibility and normalize the risks posed by this environmental hazard, which is made to appear virtually inevitable and requiring some management by the state, but mostly by vulnerable consumers.
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Association:
Name: ASC Annual Meeting
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http://www.asc41.com


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p371915_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Fitzgerald, Amy. and Baralt, Lori. "Media Depictions of Environmental Harm" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ASC Annual Meeting, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Philadelphia, PA, <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p371915_index.html>

APA Citation:

Fitzgerald, A. J. and Baralt, L. "Media Depictions of Environmental Harm" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ASC Annual Meeting, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Philadelphia, PA <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p371915_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: Within the literature examining media depictions of crime little attention has been paid to the ways harms against the environment have been depicted. Using a green criminological lens, this paper begins to fill this gap by examining the case of mercury-contaminated fish as depicted in the Globe and Mail and the New York Times from 2003 through 2008. Using qualitative content analysis we examine the construction of responsibility for the mercury contamination and for mitigating the attendant risks. We find that in explaining the contamination of fish both newspapers problematize the regulation of mercury-releasing industries by the state and pay a great deal of attention to the responsibility the state has to inform the public about the risks. However, little attention is paid to the responsibility of the mercury-releasing industries, the commercial fish industry, restaurants and supermarkets to protect consumers. The bulk of the attention is paid to the responsibility of individual consumers to limit the amount of mercury-rich fish they consume. These media depictions simultaneously foster a sense of individualized responsibility and normalize the risks posed by this environmental hazard, which is made to appear virtually inevitable and requiring some management by the state, but mostly by vulnerable consumers.


Similar Titles:
Media Trials: Media Justice or Just Media? Media Depictions of Martha Stewart and Kimberly Jones

The Media Relations Network: A Social Network Study on Media Relations in a New Media Environment

Understanding Media Choices in Non-Western Media Environments


 
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