New Article: Malinsky, Casualty Count Framing in the 2014 Israel–Gaza Conflict

Malinsky, Ayelet. “Death Is in the Eye of the Beholder: A Study of Casualty Count Framing in the 2014 Israel–Gaza Conflict.” Critical Studies on Terrorism 8.3 (2015): 491-502.

 

URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17539153.2015.1096653

 

Abstract

The 2014 Israel–Gaza war was the third of a string of conflicts to erupt between the State of Israel and Hamas in neighbouring Gaza and quickly became the deadliest for both sides. Even with the extensive media attention this crisis received, calls for more objective reporting were widespread, as locating sources that were not clearly influenced or reflective of political biases seemed near impossible. This paper seeks to explore the role “cultural proximity” plays in informing casualty count reporting in times of conflict. Qualitative content analysis is conducted on news coverage of the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict in the American daily newspaper, The New York Times, and the Israeli daily newspaper, Haaretz, to assess whether significant differences exist in the way casualty figures are addressed across varying degrees of political and cultural involvement. This research reveals that variations in casualty count reporting do indeed exist across cultural and national contexts, and deems this subject worthy of further research.

 

 

 

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New Book: Rodgers, Headlines from the Holy Land

Rodgers, James. Headlines from the Holy Land: Reporting the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015.

 

Rodgers

 

Tied by history, politics, and faith to all corners of the globe, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict fascinates and infuriates people across the world. Based on new archive research and original interviews with leading correspondents and diplomats, Headlines from the Holy Land explains why this fiercely contested region exerts such a pull over reporters: those who bring the story to the world. Despite decades of diplomacy, a just and lasting end to the conflict remains as difficult as ever to achieve. Inspired by the author’s own experience as the BBC’s correspondent in Gaza from 2002-2004, and subsequent research, this book draws on the insight of those who have spent years observing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Starting from a historical perspective, it identifies the challenges the conflict presents for contemporary journalism and diplomacy, and suggests new ways of approaching them.

 

Table of Contents

    • Foreword by Rosemary Hollis
    • Acknowledgements
    • Introduction
    • 1 Reporting from the Ruins: The End of the British Mandate and the Creation of the State of Israel
    • 2 Six Days and Seventy-Three
    • 3 Any Journalist Worth Their Salt
    • 4 The Roadmap, Reporting, and Religion
    • 5 Going Back Two Thousand Years All the Time
    • 6 The Ambassador’s Eyes and Ears
    • 7 Social Media: A Real Battleground
    • 8 Holy Land
    • Notes
    • Bibliography
    • Index

     

     

Thesis: Saariaho, Representation of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in American Newspapers

Saariaho, Katri. Representation of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in American Newspapers, BA Thesis, Dept of Languages, University of Jyvaskyla, Finland, 2015.

 
URL: https://jyx.jyu.fi/dspace/handle/123456789/46129 [PDF]

 

Excerpt
The aim of this thesis was to find out how two American newspapers, The Washington Post and The New York Times cover the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The focus was on the representation of groups, individuals and the depiction of the power relations between the two sides of the conflict.
The analysis showed that the representation of Israelis and Palestinians is not as equal and neutral as the ideals of the press give reason to assume. Washington Post often depicted Israeli violence as institutionalized and Palestinian as militancy, sometimes even terrorism, which gives Israeli violence a certain justification. Israeli violence was often represented in a rather opaque and distancing way, but certain lexical choices also implied its condemnation. References to Israeli victims were sometimes such that they evoke sympathy for them, but Palestinians’ situation was also discussed with emotionally affective lexical choices. New York Times similarly presented the Israeli military as institutionalized, although it did also acknowledge institutionalization in the Palestinian military. Israeli violence was again depicted more opaquely that Palestinian violence, but the representation was more equal than in the case of Washington Post. NYT’s references to religion were, however, more unequal since they only gave prominence to the religion of the Israelis, both as victims and in other positions. References to civilians focused on Israelis and ignored the position of the Palestinians. The results also showed analogy with previous studies: the asymmetry in the power between the two sides was largely ignored, and Israel’s actions were shown as more institutionalized and legitimized than those of Palestine.
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Finally, it has to be acknowledged that the research space of the present study was rather limited, and the research could have been conducted further, regarding both the amount of data and the depth of analysis. The method of study was also limited to only a few aspects, so there is room for a more all-encompassing study that pays more attention to, for instance, multimodality and selection of quotes. The results showed, nevertheless, that the representation of Israelis and Palestinians was unequal. In case the conflict sees no end in the near future, it is important to continue scrutinizing the coverage so that the unequal representations do not continue to influence the public’s understanding of the nature of the conflict.