Sociology G673 power and control Media representations of Ethnicity

Info on ethnicity and the media


Media representations of Ethnicity

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  • Varies across different ethnic groups
  • Some groups are represented more negatively
  • Like gender reps vary across media products
  • Are channels dedicated to specific minority ethnic groups and representations in programmes from these will be different from those from mainstream sources.
  • Channels present representations that are appreciated by their target audience but may be less engaging to groups outside the ethnic group.
  • Hybrid identities within minority ethnic, creaes more complexity when thinking about media representations.
  • Fusion music which combines two or more genres taken from different minority ethnic groups can be hard to categorise.
  • Roles are constructed from white perspective usually because they are produced by white media professionals.
  • Ethnic minority groups have been stereotyped, marginalised or excluded.
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Moore et al (2005)

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  • Identified 5 stereotypes used to portray black people:
    • Criminals
    • A threat
    • Abnormal
    • Unimportant
    • Dependent
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Van Dijk (1991)

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  • Unconscious racism in media when reporting ethnic minority groups
  • Negative language used and ack of reference to quotes from minority ethnic sources resulted in biased reporting.
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Malik (2002)

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  • Contemporary media do not accurately reflect ethnic reality of the contemporary UK
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Barker (1999)

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  • Representations of ethnic groups in EastEnders.
  • Can be seen a representing multi-ethnic community since a range of black or Asian characters take up significant roles.
  • Criticsed for using stereotypes by casting Asians as doctors and shopkeepers.
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