Description: The relationship between Japan and the U.S. has endured contention since the beginning of the millennium, but the two countries remain allies. This quantitative and qualitative content analysis examines the print coverage of two controversies in Japan-U.S. relations: the sinking of a Japanese fishing trawler and the controversy surrounding the Futenma base. By applying the theoretical framework of media framing, the research examines four U.S. newspapers and one Japanese newspaper while considering the two corresponding geopolitical periods: Japan (sur)passing. By coding each article for predefined framing categories, the research found in the era of (sur)passing, the application of the mea culpa and responsibility frames mirrored the geopolitical dynamic of the time. However, the reconciliation frame, created by the U.S. newspapers’ use of elite news sources in the period of Japan passing, went against the scholarly interpretation of the period, and instead focused on a positive bilateral relationship in order to influence public opinion.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Pearce, Nicole Marie