Date Approved

12-10-1996

Embargo Period

9-14-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in Public Relations

Department

Public Relations & Advertising

College

College of Communication & Creative Arts

First Advisor

Bagin, Don

Subject(s)

Christian conservatism; Journalism--Objectivity

Disciplines

Public Relations and Advertising

Abstract

The major purpose of this study was to analyze the content from six major U.S. newspapers regarding their coverage of Christian Conservatives. The newspapers chosen for the study were the: New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Washington Times and Atlanta Journal and Constitution.

Articles from these newspapers from June 1993 through July 1994 were analyzed for their bias against Christian Conservatives or lack thereof. Samples were selected from the newspapers during the time frame chosen when one or more of the following five descriptors appeared in the newspaper text: Christian Conservatives, Christian Coalition, Religious Right, Religions Conservatives and Radical Right. The articles were grouped as either straight news or opinion/editorial/commentary.

Following the researchers' initial evaluation, five professors from Rowan College of New Jersey evaluated five different samples to confirm or refute the researchers' findings.

The following conclusions were drawn:

(a) It does appear that a bias against Christian Conservatives exists.

(b) Despite the existence of bias found in this study, the extent is not as widespread or as blatant as has been reported in the past.

(c) A relatively healthy balance appears to exist on the pages of these newspapers regarding their coverage of Christian Conservatives. Many papers appeared to use their op/ed pages to achieve this balance,

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