Media Representation of Human Trafficking in Three Liberal Democracies, 2000-2005

Posted: 4 Jul 2009

Date Written: June 3, 2009

Abstract

This study examines whether the media have represented a broad range of ideas in their coverage of human trafficking. Theories of media framing and media coverage of foreign policy suggest that viewpoints on trafficking will have been voiced mostly by official and other establishment sources. From a content analysis of the coverage of human trafficking in six quality newspapers in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, I show that only a limited range of viewpoints have been presented. The coverage has presented the view that criminal activity has been the primary cause for trafficking and that the main way to combat trafficking is to build on current policy. While the coverage has served to legitimize the views and decisions of established policymakers, it also has marginalized alternative viewpoints and criticism of government policy. The American media are somewhat less likely to cover the official view, while the British and Canadian media are more likely to cover both the official view and alternative news.

Keywords: human trafficking, media, journalism, foreign policy, framing, representation

Suggested Citation

Gulati, Girish, Media Representation of Human Trafficking in Three Liberal Democracies, 2000-2005 (June 3, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1429595

Girish Gulati (Contact Author)

Bentley University ( email )

175 Forest Street
Waltham, MA 02145
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
1,167
PlumX Metrics