Gender is one of the primary fault lines running through contemporary American politics. The political agenda has become deeply polarized by such issues as affirmative action, abortion rights, and welfare reform. In short, gender politics, once regarded as marginal, has emerged as one of the core dividing lines in identifying politicians, parties, issues, and voters in America. Not surprising, the way media covers gender politics has long been a matter of contention. The issue at the heart of this book is whether, as critics suggest, media coverage of women in America reinforces rather than challenges the dominant culture, thereby contributing towards women's marginalization in public life. A collection of original essays by twenty-one top academics and journalists is the first book to systematically examine the impact of the media on women's power in America. It focuses on how the role of American women as citizens, political leaders, and feminist activists has been influenced by the media, for better or worse, in recent decades. Using multi-method approaches involving surveys, content analysis, focus groups, interviews, and personal experience, the authors analyse the role of women as journalists, the impact of campaign coverage, images of women in power, and coverage of women's movements and feminist policy issues. Women, Media, and Politics will be an important resource for both experts and informed readers interested in contemporary political and social debate.
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Oxford University Press Inc