by Michael Sweeney, Professor; Associate Director for Graduate Studies
Graduate students enrolled in Ohio University’s E.W. Scripps School of Journalism boast an astounding 19 academic papers accepted to the annual conference of the Association for Education in Journalism & Mass Communication.
Papers are double-blind reviewed, with submissions by students and professors judged without author identification.
The grad students had 14 AEJMC papers last year — and that was considered a lot at the time.
A paper by PhD student Ashley Furrow, “A Balancing Act: The Rhetorical Vision of Champion Magazine,” was named second-place student paper by the Magazine Division.
Students wrote the papers for classes or as independent study projects conducted with Scripps faculty. They will present their findings Aug. 9-12 at the Chicago Marriott Downtown. The Scripps School provides grants to help defray the costs of travel to the convention.
The papers accepted for presentation are:
Sagar Atre, “Pre-9/11 Stains on Pakistan’s Character: American and British Newspaper Coverage of the Kargil War of 1999.” This is a qualitative study, a textual analysis of two U.S. and two British newspapers and their coverage of the India-Pakistan War of 1999, the two countries’ first battle after acquisition of nuclear weapons. The study specifically studied the coverage of Pakistan as a representative of the Muslim world, the religion with which the West has had a turbulent relationship.
Sagar Atre, “Press Censorship of the Indian Emergency of 1975-1977: The Response of the Underground Movement.” This is a historical, qualitative study of the Indian Emergency of 1975-77, when Indira Gandhi, India’s erstwhile Prime Minister imposed an authoritarian rule with “press censorship to “maintain internal security.” The study specifically looks at the underground press and bulletins, established clandestinely all over the country by various political and social organizations, opposition leaders and social workers.
P. Vijayalakshmi, Sagar Atre, and Yusuf Kalyango, “Online Social Networking Profiles and Self-presentation of Indian Youths.” This is a quantitative study of social media profiles of Indian youths between the ages of 13 and 20. It studied aspects such as self-presentation, privacy settings and sharing activities done on these social media websites by young Indian boys and girls. Atre contributed to this paper as a research assistant to Dr. Kalyango.
Clay Carey, “Who Are Journalists? Presentation of Self on the Microblog ‘We Are Journalists.’” This textual analysis explores the presentations of self that emerge in the writings of journalists who blog at the Tumblr microblog “We Are Journalists.”
Clay Carey, “Creating Conversation: Interactivity on Community Press-Supported Facebook Pages.” This paper explores interactivity among readers who visited the Facebook pages of 10 community newspapers. it found correlations between interactivity and certain post topics as well as other aspects of Facebook posts, such as the inclusion of links.
Lena Chapin,, “Fighting to be Heard: The Homeless Grapevine’s Battle to Provide and Protect the Freedom of Speech for Cleveland’s Homeless Citizens.” In 1993, the first issue of The New Homeless Grapevine hit the streets, a place where its writers, editors and contributors felt at home. The Grapevine was the first modern street paper in Ohio. Focusing on the plight of the homeless of Cleveland, The Grapevine helped spread awareness and change throughout Cleveland and much of Ohio for more than fifteen years. One of the main goals of The Grapevine was to provide a voice for the homeless, an often marginalized and forgotten group of society. The Grapevine not only succeeded in this mission by providing an outlet for homeless individuals to voice their opinions but by defending that voice through legal battles and amplifying it to a state and national level until the end of publication in 2009.
Sally Ann Cruikshank, “A Slogan of Mockery:” Never Again and the Unnamed Genocide in Southern Sudan, 1989-2005.” This study examines how eight U.S. media outlets framed the conflict in southern Sudan. A textual analysis revealed that, contrary to previous studies concerning U.S. media coverage of Africa, southern Sudan received steady coverage. Three dominant themes emerged in the coverage: famine, slavery, and oil. Despite the details of the civil war being a veritable checklist for genocide, the media failed to realize it.
Sally Ann Cruikshank, “The Victim and the Trickster in the Other World: Myth in CNN’s Coverage of the Rwandan Genocide.” This study examined coverage of the Rwandan genocide on CNN from the start of the genocide, April 6, 1994, through the next six months. It analyzed CNN’s coverage from the perspective of myth, using three master myths, the Other World, the Victim, and the Trickster. Evidence of all three myths was found in CNN’s coverage. Rwanda was routinely depicted as a dark and forbidding place, while Rwandans themselves were portrayed as both Victims and animals, or the Trickster. The author argues that the adherence to these myths by journalists created a narrative that failed to depict the true nature of the genocide.
Sally Ann Cruikshank and Joachim Hechinger, University of Leipzig, “Covering the Veil: France 24.com and CNN.com’s Framing of the French Burqa Ban.” This study examines how France24.com and the U.S. edition of CNN.com framed France’s burqa ban, which went into effect on April 11, 2011. Results showed that both websites primarily framed the ban as a human rights issue. France 24 covered the ban in a negative tone in two-thirds of its stories, while CNN’s coverage of the issue was mainly neutral. The findings contradict the propaganda model, which suggests media coverage often reflects the policies of their government.
Jim DeBrosse, “Taking Back the Streets: A Reporter Strategy for Challenging Access Barriers at Shopping Malls.” This paper instructs journalists in ways that they can push back against restrictions on customer interviews at large regional malls and suggests how media lawyers might frame a legal challenge to access barriers by citing civil rights precedents and the growing use of public funds by private mall developers.
Jim DeBrosse, “Are Wikimedia Less Susceptible to Censorship than Mainstream Media? A Case Study Comparison of the Top 10 Censored Stories of 2010-2011.” This paper finds that, while Wikipedia and Wikinews escape the commercial pressures of private ownership, their reliance on “reliable, published sources” and their lesser valuation of alternative evidence condemn them to an unquestioning repetition of what the mainstream media and government officials have already supplied them.
Ashley Furrow, “Mary Garber: A Woman in a Man’s World.” Mary Garber was one of the first full-time sportswriters at a daily newspaper in the country and became the oldest living female sportswriter. This is the story of a female pioneer who through courage, persistence, and most importantly, a fundamental love of journalism and sports, became a trailblazer for women in her field.
Ashley Furrow, “A Balancing Act: The Rhetorical Vision of Champion Magazine.” This paper examines the rhetorical strategies employed by Champion magazine, the membership publication of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), in its quest to accomplish its mission and goals. Utilizing the critical method of fantasy theme analysis and symbolic convergence theory in the study of the text and photographs, it will explore whether a shared rhetorical community has been established within Champion magazine as well as identify four fantasy types found in the magazine’s pages.
Kerry Kubilius, “Out of the Mists of Time: Newspaper Coverage of Travel to Lithuania 1988-1993.” The paper looks at how travel to Lithuania was covered in American newspapers prior to, during, and after the struggle for independence from the Soviet Union.
Young Joon Lim and Michael S. Sweeney, “Lasting Scars of the JFK Assassination: The Tragedy and PTSD-like Trauma of Merriman Smith.” This paper uses a wealth of primary documents to argue that Merriman Smith, who witnessed the assassination of President Kennedy and saw his body at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, suffered from symptoms that match those of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Charlie Martinez, “More Diverse Images of Women Found in Smaller Niche Magazine: Diverse Feminine Images Presented in Christian Teen Magazines.” Martinez conducted a content analysis of images within Christian magazines for teenage girls and found a wider understanding of feminine beauty than is portrayed in consumer magazines for teenage girls.
Jeremy Saks, “Changes in Content Characteristics of Nontraditional Media after Partnering with Traditional News Providers.” The study is a content analysis of the website FiveThirtyEight.com examining how its content changed after it converged with The New York Times. The study found that the website changed in multiple ways after the partnership, including a smaller variety of topics, fewer authors, longer articles, and more hyperlinks and multimedia per article.
Molly Yanity, “Fine and Punishment: James Harrison, NFL fines and USA Today’s construction of black masculinity.” This is a textual analysis of USA Today’s coverage of the NFL’s fines levied to Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison for tackles deemed impermissible. The coverage appeared to construct Harrison as what the theoretical literature describes as a “bad Black man” and his tackling in criminal/racial terms.
Molly Yanity and Ashley Furrow, “Local or National?: An Examination of Fans’ Perceptions of College Football Scandal Coverage.” Two and a half years ago, the authors surveyed college football fans to learn where they go for college sports scandal coverage and what factors they consider in making the decision to turn to local or national sources. Given the onslaught of college football scandals that have shaken the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and its fans in the last two and a half years, we revisited the survey. The fans’ perceptions of scandal coverage from local and national media outlets – and the difference two and a half years make – are the subject of this study.
A 20th paper co-authored by Quan Xie, a master’s student in the School of Media Arts and Studies, was written in a Scripps School graduate-level content analysis class. The paper, “Not Just a Pretty Face: Changing K-pop Idol Imagery from 2005 to 2012,” was written with PhD student Mark Walters of The University of Southern Illinois-Carbondale. Their study explored the shifting media images that Korean pop music (K-pop) idol groups. The researchers conducted a content analysis of the universe of album covers of 20 representative K-pop groups during this period of time. Five hypotheses were proposed to answer how groups’ dominant images changed from the mid-2000s to convey attractiveness to a transnational audience. The results shine a light on Westernization, Asianization, and gender presentations.