Research Note: The Coverage of War: Do Women Matter? A Longitudinal Content Analysis of Broadsheets in Germany.
In: European Journal of Communication, Vol. 25, No. 1: pp. 59-68
Our social consciousness reserves the role of fighter solely for men. Women are not considered as being authoritative or decisive actors in the context of war and violence. During armed conflicts or other violent crises, female acting subjects seem to leave the public (i.e. media) stage – a place where they are underrepresented even under normal circumstances. Furthermore, media coverage of war, it is said, largely assigns the role of the victim to women. However, there is not much empirical evidence to support this view due to the significant lack of longitudinal quantitative studies on media coverage of women during wartime. In order to investigate this, a framing analysis of media coverage of war between 1989 and 2000 was conducted in Germany. This article reports on the results of this framing analysis and the representation of women during wartime in quality German newspapers. It is the first longitudinal gender-specific framing analysis of war coverage ever carried out in any country.