Ethnicity and Crime

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General features of ethnicity

1. EM are underepresented in senior management of media companies and making programmes. GMG- they are filtered through the 'white gaze'.

2. They are ghettoized in the media- meaning they are marginialised and featured in mainly specialised programming dealing with issues of stereotyping, discrimination, prejudice.

Also, there is a form of symbolic annihilation of main minority ethnic grounds, with those from Chinese, Greek and Polish background non existence or stereotyped by the news values of mainly white men.

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Stereotypes of ethnic minorities

Cottle et al...- repersented in a limited range of degrading, negative roles, scape goats and source of all social problems

  • Deviants and law breakers- show in context of drug dealing, terrorism, mugging, gang knife-Hall's- 1970s study - Media represent young black people as folk devils
  • As posing a threat- possesing a culture which is seen as 'alien' and the 'enemy within', honour killings, forced marriage cases give a false impression to others
  • Causing social problems, conflict & trouble- linked to racial problems, ethnicity related riots, disruption caused by underachieving black students, lone parents etc- often presented in the context of having individual 'inadequicies' than people with social problems genreated by thinkgs like poverty, racial discrimination, poor housing etc. Asylum seekers shown as bogus rather than people actually fleeing from persecution- media generate moral panics over these issues e.g. Sun's 2003 'Swan bake'.
  • Having limited talents and skills- people who either have few skills and talents, often shown in low paid work like cleaning jobs or educational failures
  • Having problems internationally- LEDC countries are portrayed as being chaotic and corrupt e..g. AIDs in africa, use child soldeiers , live in starving conditions etc- need white population in western world to help them
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Islamaphobia and the media

After the 9/11 bombings, 2005 London bombings and Al Quadea attacks, there was a wave of negative media reporting surrounding muslims because of a tiny proportion of peoples acts. A 2007 report by the Mayor of London found 91% of news reports on muslims were negative- they had been stereotyped in newspapers as fundamentalists who threaten British values e.g. by opressing women by forcing them into wearing burqas, into forced marriages, sharia law etc

Media reporting about muslims created a moral panic and Goffman's concept of a 'stigmatised identity' applied to them as they were seen as abnormal, which excluded them from society.

This has contributed to creating 'islamaphobia' in the white population of Britain. Baroness Warsi suggested anti muslim prejudice in Britain had become so normal that they had passed the 'dinner table test' of talking about Muslims in such a stigmatised way without being condemned.

Phillips- found that it went to the extent the very word muslim made images of terrorism that you associated with 'Mrs. Ahmed' down the road.

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Explanations the stereotyping of ethnicity

Pluralists- they just reflect the news values of journalists and material audiences want

Cottle- encourages audiences to construct ther identity by defininng who 'we' are in relation to who 'we' are not, in terms of us and them. This means the majority of white audiences will be encouraged by representations of cultural differences of ethnic minorities to secure their white idenity by defining themselves as difference and superior to 'them'.

GMG- negative media stereotypes are created through white eyes of media and the ideology and news values of journalists. These representations are creating, maintaining and reinforcing racist stereotypes. They can make ethnic minorties vulnerable to discrimination, whilte at the same time reinforcing cultural hegemony of the dominant white ideology and ellefed supremanct of white culture. They use EM as scaegoats for social and economic issues and divide white and black communties on racism. This diverts attention away from inequality and protects interests of the ruling class.


More B&A characters in Soaps, they use new media faster than white majority, greater policy in TV to make EM as presenters.

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