Prejudice in the Media
Julianna Bloom, Verika Dildy, Jennifer Singleton, and Jade Tibbals
October 8, 2008
Article Summary #10
Sommers, S., Apfelbaum, E., Dukes, K., Toosi, N., & Wang, E. (2006, December). Race
and Media Coverage of Hurricane Katrina: Analysis, Implications, and Future
Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy (ASAP)
39-55. Retrieved September 9, 2008, doi:10.1111/j.1530-2415.2006.00103.x
The purpose of this article focuses on the media’s depictions of the effects of
The authors wanted to look at the media’s influence of American’s
attitudes and views of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
It specifically looks at the
depictions of the survivors and the implications of the media on race.
It covers three
aspects of the media: use of language, story angle, and “new media” reports.
The media’s language influences how the public views the effects of a natural
disaster or any news story.
The use of the word “refugees” to describe the survivors was
discouraged by President Bush because of its negative connotations.
The authors aimed
their study at the influence of race on the media’s descriptions of the survivors of the
By looking at the photos and media coverage of the storm, it is easy to see that the
story angle focused on violent crime.
Reports of the amount and intensity of the crime in
the area were largely inflated. The media claims that they have to run stories that will be
of interest to the public, which in turn, could be influenced by race.
But those stories,
will just serve to reinforce the preexisting beliefs about the community of New Orleans.
In the 21
century, more news and media outlets are available for the public to
receive information about major events.
Web based blogs are popular sources for