Printing the Pandemic: An Analysis of H1N1 Vaccine News Coverage

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Creator: 

McBride, Heather

Date: 

2014

Abstract: 

This thesis examines print media coverage of the vaccination debate during the H1N1 pandemic in 2009. It explores how the agenda-setting press in North America framed the benefits and risks of vaccination: the key themes it emphasized, the sources whose voices it privileged and those it overlooked, and the cultural and historical references it invoked. Although news headlines initially depicted an ominous message of doom, over time the framing of the disease shifted as the severity of the illness failed to live up to its worst-case projections. The research shows that the coverage
significantly privileged the claims of public health officials, provided very little space for dissenting viewpoints and perspectives, and emphasized themes of risk, uncertainty, moral duty and responsibility.

Subject: 

Mass Communications
Public Health
Epidemiology

Language: 

English

Publisher: 

Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 
M.A.

Thesis Degree Level: 

Master's

Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Communication

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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