Red dragon or white knight? Analysing Dutch news coverage on the People’s Republic of China

by Petra Meijer

Institution: Leiden University
Year: 2015
Keywords: framing; China; perceptions; framematrix
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2070566
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/35003


Even though much has been written about the roles ‘the West’ attributes to China, little research has been done about how the media portray China in our everyday newspapers. This would be important, because how Dutch people see China is largely based on what they read about it in the newspapers or what they see about China on the television. In other words, they have a mediatized image of China. In the media, China’s growing influence is subject of ongoing debate. China is often portrayed as an opportunistic superpower, ready to take over the world. At the same time, China is said to be ‘booming business’ or might even save the world from economic disasters. By exploring the ‘sending side’ of the so‐called framing process, this thesis sheds light on the ways in which China is being portrayed in the Dutch media and on how these different and sometimes even contradictory images ‘work’. This thesis seeks to investigate the frames used by Dutch journalists in their news reports on China by doing a news frame analysis. Through an inductive frame analysis based on both elements of qualitative content analysis and grounded theory, six news frames were abstracted from the material: the miracle about to end‐, red dragon‐, white knight‐, enfant terrible‐, booming business‐ and immoral giant‐frame. The results were tested for both inter coder and test‐retest reliability. Finally, this thesis explores to what extent Beck’s risk society theory and Said’s Orientalism can explain the findings. Advisors/Committee Members: Koetsenruijter, Willem (advisor).