To save this undefined to your undefined account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your undefined account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Past studies, largely based on the United States, have argued that differential coverage of men and women candidates could explain the lack of women in elected political office. We investigate, first, whether a gender bias exists in coverage of candidates and, second, the possible mechanisms underlying any differences in the amount and tone of candidates’ news media coverage. Using data from the 2009 European Election Study Media Analysis, drawn from media coverage in 25 EU member states during the European Parliament election campaigns, we find that, similar to previous research, there is evidence of a gender gap in the amount of media coverage. Even for highly prominent and competitive candidates, the gender bias in media coverage remains. However, this bias in media coverage largely reflects the parties’ preselection of viable candidates and that where there are remedies in place to address the underrepresentation of women (i.e., quotas), women candidates actually have lower visibility in campaign coverage. We also find that, though women candidates are more often the subject of valence evaluations in news stories, male candidates are more negatively evaluated in news stories.
In this article, we examine gender differences in news media portrayals of nominees to high courts and whether those differences vary across country and time. Although past research has examined gender differences in news media coverage of candidates for elective office, few studies have looked at media coverage of high court nominees. As women are increasingly nominated to courts around the world, it is important to examine how nominations are covered by the news media and whether there is significant variation in coverage based on gender. We analyze media coverage of high court justices in five democracies: Argentina, Australia, Canada, South Africa, and the United States. We compare coverage of women appointed to the highest court with coverage of the most temporally proximate male nominees. We also compare coverage over time within each country as well as between countries that nominated women early with those that did so more recently. We find some evidence of gendered coverage, especially with regard to the attention paid to the gender of the women appointees.
There is a growing body of work examining gender stereotypes in media representations of female candidates, but much of this literature is based on analysis of media sources in developed countries, including the United States (Braden 1996; Jalalzai 2006; Kahn 1994, 1996; Smith 1997), Australia (Kittilson and Fridkin 2008), Canada (Kittilson and Fridkin 2008), France (Murray 2010b), and Germany (Wiliarty 2010). The increase in female presidential candidates and presidents in Latin America has encouraged research on media portrayals of women in Argentina, Chile, and Venezuela (Franceschet and Thomas 2010; Hinojosa 2010; Piscopo 2010; Thomas and Adams 2010). To date, however, there has been little research exploring media representations of female politicians in Africa. (Exceptions include Adams 2010; Anderson, Diabah, and hMensah 2011). A question that emerges is whether the gender stereotypes common in coverage in the United States, Europe, and Latin America are also prevalent in Africa.
The Australian news media used the metaphor of the gender war(s) to describe Julia Gillard's political strategies and speech acts in the final nine months of her term as that nation's first woman prime minister. In particular, the metaphor was mobilized in response to Gillard's October 9, 2012, parliamentary speech on sexism and misogyny. Based on a critical discourse analysis of the gender wars allegory as it was applied to Gillard by three Australian newspapers, my article analyzes the meanings revealed by metaphoric constructions of the former prime minister's speeches as unusual and unjust forms of political warfare. I argue that the trope of the gender wars cast Gillard's political tactics as a violation of deeply held cultural norms about appropriate behavior on the so-called political battlefield, and it worked both to discipline Gillard for raising issues of sexism and gender inequality in politics and to bracket gendered power relations out of everyday understandings of political competition.
At the U.S. 2012 general election, six minority women were newly elected to the House of Representatives, a net increase from 21 to 23, and a rise from 23% to 27% as a proportion of all women in the House (CAWP 2010, 2012). Among this group was Iraq War veteran Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI 2nd District), the first Hindu American to serve in Congress. Despite generally positive coverage, her local paper also framed Gabbard's identity as an “underdog … on the margins of popular respectability.” In Utah, Mormon Mia Love ran the first viable black female Republican campaign, securing 47% of the vote in the state's overwhelmingly white 4th District. Love was frequently framed positively as a “historic candidate” and was invited to speak at the GOP convention that year. Despite this, her self-portrayal as a product of the American dream—linking her second-generation Haitian identity to her partisan politics—drew sharp criticism. Local campaign coverage even interrogated the legality of her family history with headlines such as “Love's Immigrant Story may be True, but Some Questions Linger.”
This article offers a new approach to studying sex differences in responses to negative news, using real-time physiological responses as opposed to self-reports. Measurements of skin conductance and heart rate are used to examine whether there are differences in the extent to which women and men are aroused by and attentive to negative news stories. Like experiments that have relied on postexposure self-reports, we detect no sex differences in arousal in response to negative news stories. However, in contrast to those experiments, we find indications that women are more attentive than men to negative news content. We consider possible reasons for this difference in findings. We also discuss neuropsychological studies that are consistent with our finding of greater attentiveness on the part of women to negative stimuli. Finally, we consider the relationship between our work and evidence in the literature that women consume less news than men.
One of most negative campaigns in history may have taken place during the 2014 Senate election cycle. Nearly 75% of senate ads aired during a two-week period in early fall of 2014 showed a candidate in a negative light, according to the Wesleyan Media Project. A postelection analysis by the Center for Public Integrity showed that 46% of the more than one million ads aired during the 2014 senate campaigns were negative. And, in the most competitive states, the proportion of negative ads was even higher (e.g., 67% in North Carolina, 58% in Kansas). Negative advertisements sponsored by candidates, interest groups, and political parties are being launched on the airways, in newspapers, on radio, and via the Internet at an unprecedented pace. These advertisements, however, are now routinely subjected to fact checking. The Washington Post, along with many other fact-checking organizations, such as PolitiFact, The AP Factcheck, and Factcheck.org, examine thousands of statements and political advertisements during campaigns to determine the accuracy of the claims. For instance, during the 2012 election cycle, PolitiFact had 36 reporters and editors working in 11 states producing more than 800 fact checks on the presidential campaign and hundreds more for candidates running for the U.S. House and U.S. Senate.
Although there is evidence that negative advertising “works” at least some of the time, it has been suggested that going negative poses a special risk for female candidates because it violates expectations about appropriate behavior that are rooted in the traditional gender stereotypes still held by many voters. In this paper, we employ data from a survey experiment to examine gender differences in the effectiveness of one particular attack made by a challenger against an incumbent of the opposite sex in a hypothetical race for the U.S. House of Representatives. Our interest is not limited to the attack itself, however, but extends to the question of how candidates should respond when they are attacked and whether certain types of responses/rebuttals (including counterattacks) work better for men than they do for women, and vice versa, in terms of mitigating the damage inflicted by an initially successful negative ad. Overall, we find little support for the idea that the effectiveness of either attack or response (denial, counterattack, counterimaging, justification, accusing one's opponent of mudslinging) varies significantly according to candidate gender. Further, shared partisanship matters more than shared gender in shaping how voters react to the campaign messages of male and female candidates.
Thematic Review: Gender and Campaigns in American Politics