Current Issue Summary

Vol. 46, No. 4, Fall 2018

Election Coverage of Women: Good, Better, But Still Not Best

The cascade of 2018 victories for women running for seats in the U.S. Congress, governors’ mansions, and state legislatures was gratifying, indicating a motivated electorate and affirming the quality of candidates, many of them making a first try for public office.  Did news coverage of those races improve from the earlier “year of the woman” (1992), when five women were elected to the U.S. Senate in a single year – a first? MRTW has insights from four experts with long experience analyzing news coverage of women who run.

Black Women Journos Dissed by Trump

In 1947, Alice Dunnigan became the first black woman to receive press credentials to cover the White House during former President Harry Truman’s campaign tour. Since Dunnigan’s era a procession of African American women has followed in Dunnigan’s footsteps and distinguished themselves as White House and Washington correspondents.  It’s a demanding, competitive beat, with a never-ending effort to obtain the attention and cooperation of the White House press staff and opportunities to question the president.  The challenges they face have multiplied with Donald Trump’s unbridled disdain for female black reporters who have questioned him about his policies and his inflammatory remarks.

Another Down Year for Women in Television

The percentages of female characters on screen and women working in key roles behind the scenes declined on television programs in 2017-18, according to the latest Boxed In report released by Dr. Martha Lauzen, executive director of the Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film at San Diego State University.  Now in its 21st year, the study provides the most comprehensive historical record of women’s representation and employment in television available.

Research in Depth: Finding A Voice: Newspaper Editors and the Effect of Sexual Assault and Rape News by Susan Tebben, Ohio University

Research in Depth: An Analysis of Media Reporting on Intimate Partner Violence and Homicide by Emily Meyer, Norwich University

Commentary: Melania Trump – Media Enigma by Maurine Beasley, professor emerita, University of Maryland College Park

Plus News Briefs and Book Reviews!

Media Report to Women has hard copies of back issues dating to its founding in 1972 and PDFs from more recent years. Indispensable for research!