Identifying Gendered Narratives: A Qualitative Content Analysis of Media Framing of Syrian Refugees in the United States

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The announcement by President Barack Obama to admit 10,000 Syrian refugees in the United States sparked notable controversy. The subsequent studies examining the framing of Syrian refugees in the American media did not specifically incorporate the element of gender in their scholarly works. This thesis argues that it is important not to overlook gender in research on the framing of refugees. Therefore, this thesis employs a qualitative content analysis to investigate whether there is a difference in how male and female Syrian refugees are framed in the three largest American national newspapers: USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times. The study examines whether female Syrian refugees are more often framed as vulnerable and male Syrian refugees as threatening. This thesis does not find conclusive evidence that men and women are framed differently, however, the results do point in that direction. Additionally, the results demonstrate that both frames are present in the articles under analysis. Particularly, the narrative linking the admission of Syrian refugees to fears for the safety of American citizens and terrorism has garnered significant attention in the American press, mainly through paraphrasing and quotations.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen