Sensationalizing death? Graphic disaster images in the tabloid and broadsheet press

Hanusch, Folker (2013) Sensationalizing death? Graphic disaster images in the tabloid and broadsheet press. European Journal of Communication, 28(5), pp. 497-513.

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Debates over the extent of graphic imagery of death in newspapers often suffer from generalized assertions that are based on inadequate or incomplete empirical evidence. Newspapers are believed to display death in very graphic ways, with particularly the tabloid press assumedly leading a race to the bottom. This article reports the results of a study of tabloid and broadsheet images of death from the 2010 Haiti earthquake in eight Western European and North American countries. It shows that, far from omnipresent, graphic images of death are relatively rare. While tabloids overall display a larger percentage of graphic images, this was not the case everywhere, with particularly the UK, Canada and the US displaying strong similarities between tabloids and broadsheets. In Austria, Germany, Norway and Switzerland, on the other hand, there were distinct differences between the two types. The article argues that different extents of tabloidization may account for these differences.

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ID Code: 67806
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Death, tabloid, sensationalism, newspaper, image
DOI: 10.1177/0267323113491349
ISSN: 1460-3705
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING (190000) > JOURNALISM AND PROFESSIONAL WRITING (190300) > Journalism Studies (190301)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA STUDIES (200100) > Communication Studies (200101)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Current > Schools > Journalism, Media & Communication
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Sage Publications Ltd
Deposited On: 26 Feb 2014 04:47
Last Modified: 27 Feb 2014 00:19

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