The Newhouse School‘s Dr. Guy Golan recently presented “Framing Latin America in Elite U.S. Media” at the World Association of Public Opinion Research conference in Bogota, Columbia.
The study, co-authored by Golan with doctoral student Greg Munno, utilized content analysis to examine all the editorials and Op-Eds in The New York Times and Washington Post over an 18-month period that dealt significantly with Latin America (n=132).
The analysis found a troubling lack of diversity among the opinion articles, which, according to scholars such as Golan, play a key role in shaping public policy because they are closely followed by elites.
For instance, nearly 75 percent of the pieces in the study’s census were written by men. Most were also written by U.S.-based authors and not their Latin American counterparts, and many important countries (such as Brazil) were largely ignored. The Op-Eds also tended to reinforce the position of the editorials instead of providing a space for alternative points of view.
Golan presented the study as part of a panel that included other top scholars, including Drs. Al Gunther and Hernando Rojas of the University of Wisconsin.
While in Bogota, Golan was interviewed by El Espectador, Columbia’s largest daily newspaper, about recent violence in the Middle East sparked by a video denigrating the Muslim prophet Muhammad. Here’s a link to the piece, which is in Spanish.
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