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Conventional Coverage/Unconventional Politicians: Gender and Media Coverage of Canadian Leaders' Debates, 1993, 1997, 2000

  • Elisabeth Gidengil (a1) and Joanna Everitt (a2)

This article explores the implications for female politicians of the gendered nature of news coverage. An analysis of the language used in television news coverage of the English-language leaders' debates in the Canadian federal elections of 1993, 1997 and 2000 confirms that the debates are framed in stereotypically masculine ways as battles, sporting events or back street brawls. When the news coverage is compared with the leaders' actual behaviour in the debates, it is clear that the coverage focuses disproportionately on combative displays of behaviour by female party leaders, but tends to ignore the women when they adopt a more low-key style, especially when the novelty of a female leader has worn off.

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Canadian Journal of Political Science/Revue canadienne de science politique
  • ISSN: 0008-4239
  • EISSN: 1744-9324
  • URL: /core/journals/canadian-journal-of-political-science-revue-canadienne-de-science-politique
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