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Gendering in the electoral run : a media monitoring study of women politicians’ representation in Belgian news

Joke D'Heer (UGent) , Sara De Vuyst (UGent) and Sarah Van Leuven (UGent)
Author
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Abstract
The present study explores gendered representations in Belgian electoral news coverage. Compared to other Western countries, Belgium has consistently reported a small share of female politicians in the news, offering limited insights into the ways they are portrayed. Starting from the observation that the (mainly Anglo-Saxon) body of work on women politicians’ representation has reported mixed findings, the study intends to provide a more comprehensive analysis by taking political and contextual factors into account. By means of a quantitative content analysis, we monitored news content prior to the 2019 Belgian elections, resulting in a sample of 981 television, newspaper, radio and web-based news items. The findings confirm the persistence of gendered patterns in Belgian news content, regardless of a candidate’s political characteristics. Women were less often represented and their gender, appearance and family life were more often highlighted. Whereas a candidate’s political power provided additional insights into gendering, some differences in coverage between candidates could not be explained by either sex or political characteristics. Lastly, differences between media were limited, though web-based news was more negative in tone.
Keywords
Gendering, women politicians, Belgium, news representation, Belgium, elections, gendering, multilevel regression, news media, political journalism, representation, women politicians

Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

MLA
D’Heer, Joke, et al. “Gendering in the Electoral Run : A Media Monitoring Study of Women Politicians’ Representation in Belgian News.” JOURNALISM, 2022, doi:10.1177/14648849211032427.
APA
D’Heer, J., De Vuyst, S., & Van Leuven, S. (2022). Gendering in the electoral run : a media monitoring study of women politicians’ representation in Belgian news. JOURNALISM. https://doi.org/10.1177/14648849211032427
Chicago author-date
D’Heer, Joke, Sara De Vuyst, and Sarah Van Leuven. 2022. “Gendering in the Electoral Run : A Media Monitoring Study of Women Politicians’ Representation in Belgian News.” JOURNALISM. https://doi.org/10.1177/14648849211032427.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
D’Heer, Joke, Sara De Vuyst, and Sarah Van Leuven. 2022. “Gendering in the Electoral Run : A Media Monitoring Study of Women Politicians’ Representation in Belgian News.” JOURNALISM. doi:10.1177/14648849211032427.
Vancouver
1.
D’Heer J, De Vuyst S, Van Leuven S. Gendering in the electoral run : a media monitoring study of women politicians’ representation in Belgian news. JOURNALISM. 2022;
IEEE
[1]
J. D’Heer, S. De Vuyst, and S. Van Leuven, “Gendering in the electoral run : a media monitoring study of women politicians’ representation in Belgian news,” JOURNALISM, 2022.
@article{8715814,
  abstract     = {{The present study explores gendered representations in Belgian electoral news coverage. Compared to other Western countries, Belgium has consistently reported a small share of female politicians in the news, offering limited insights into the ways they are portrayed. Starting from the observation that the (mainly Anglo-Saxon) body of work on women politicians’ representation has reported mixed findings, the study intends to provide a more comprehensive analysis by taking political and contextual factors into account. By means of a quantitative content analysis, we monitored news content prior to the 2019 Belgian elections, resulting in a sample of 981 television, newspaper, radio and web-based news items. The findings confirm the persistence of gendered patterns in Belgian news content, regardless of a candidate’s political characteristics. Women were less often represented and their gender, appearance and family life were more often highlighted. Whereas a candidate’s political power provided additional insights into gendering, some differences in coverage between candidates could not be explained by either sex or political characteristics. Lastly, differences between media were limited, though web-based news was more negative in tone.}},
  author       = {{D'Heer, Joke and De Vuyst, Sara and Van Leuven, Sarah}},
  issn         = {{1464-8849}},
  journal      = {{JOURNALISM}},
  keywords     = {{Gendering,women politicians,Belgium,news representation,Belgium,elections,gendering,multilevel regression,news media,political journalism,representation,women politicians}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  title        = {{Gendering in the electoral run : a media monitoring study of women politicians’ representation in Belgian news}},
  url          = {{http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/14648849211032427}},
  year         = {{2022}},
}

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