Description: The purpose of this study is to investigate how local and foreign newspapers used the war journalism and peace journalism frames when covering the Sri Lankan civil war, and to uncover subframes specific to the conflict. The first part of the thesis provides an in- depth literature review that addresses the history of the conflict and media freedom in Sri Lanka. The newspaper articles for the textual analysis were selected from mainstream Sri Lankan and U.S newspapers: the Daily News (a state sponsored newspaper) and Daily Mirror from Sri Lanka, and the New York Times and Washington Post from the U.S. A total of 185 articles were analyzed and categorized into war journalism and peace journalism. Next, subframes specific to the Sri Lankan conflict were identified. The overall coverage is dominated by the peace journalism frame, and the strongest war journalism frame is visible in local newspaper articles. Furthermore, two subframes specific to the Sri Lanka conflict were identified: war justification subframe and humanitarian crisis subframe. In conclusion, the study reveals that in the selected newspapers, the peace journalism frame dominated the coverage of the Sri Lankan civil war. All in all, while adding to the growing scholarship of media framing in international conflicts, the study will benefit newspaper editors and decision-makers by providing textual analysis of content produced from the coverage of war and conflict during a dangerous time period for both journalists and the victims of war.
Date: December 2014
Creator: Ratnam, Cheran