Skip to main content

Representations of autism in Australian print media

Journal Article


Abstract


  • The mass media provides a frame for discourse around important health issues, and it has been widely demonstrated that the development and reinforcement of stereotypes of minority groups are strongly influenced by the news and entertainment media. An extensive search of academic databases failed to locate any studies which examined the representation of autism in the news media, although there were a number of articles on the media role in the autism and MMR debate. This paper reports on an examination of the extent, and nature, of coverage of ¿autism spectrum disorders¿ in the Australian print media between 1996 and 2005. Key findings include a relatively limited amount of factual information and a dual stereotype of people labeled as having autism as either dangerous and

    uncontrollable or unloved and poorly treated. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of the nature and tone of this coverage of autism and its potential impact on individuals described as ¿autistic¿, their families and carers and the community in general.

    Keywords: autism; media representation; discourse

Publication Date


  • 2009

Citation


  • Jones, S. C. & Harwood, V. (2009). Representations of autism in Australian print media. Disability and Society, 24 (1), 5-18.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-60849116717

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/hbspapers/1702

Has Global Citation Frequency


Number Of Pages


  • 13

Start Page


  • 5

End Page


  • 18

Volume


  • 24

Issue


  • 1

Abstract


  • The mass media provides a frame for discourse around important health issues, and it has been widely demonstrated that the development and reinforcement of stereotypes of minority groups are strongly influenced by the news and entertainment media. An extensive search of academic databases failed to locate any studies which examined the representation of autism in the news media, although there were a number of articles on the media role in the autism and MMR debate. This paper reports on an examination of the extent, and nature, of coverage of ¿autism spectrum disorders¿ in the Australian print media between 1996 and 2005. Key findings include a relatively limited amount of factual information and a dual stereotype of people labeled as having autism as either dangerous and

    uncontrollable or unloved and poorly treated. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of the nature and tone of this coverage of autism and its potential impact on individuals described as ¿autistic¿, their families and carers and the community in general.

    Keywords: autism; media representation; discourse

Publication Date


  • 2009

Citation


  • Jones, S. C. & Harwood, V. (2009). Representations of autism in Australian print media. Disability and Society, 24 (1), 5-18.

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-60849116717

Ro Metadata Url


  • http://ro.uow.edu.au/hbspapers/1702

Has Global Citation Frequency


Number Of Pages


  • 13

Start Page


  • 5

End Page


  • 18

Volume


  • 24

Issue


  • 1