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Racism: Fact or Frame?

Autor:   •  October 11, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,309 Words (6 Pages)  •  6,603 Views

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Racism: Fact or frame?

The issue of racism has been one that has generated mixed reactions especially in America in all platforms, education, governance and even resource allocation. The intrinsic part of this vice lies deep within the structures of governance and of socialization among the citizenry of America. There have been aspects of debate between the issues of racism amongst the elite. In trying to exploit the issue of racism, there is a need for the identification of the matter as a frame or a fact. With regards to Rereading America and the chapter Created Equal, this essay is endeared in diffusing the issue with regards to the implications that the media has on the issue of racism altogether and the impact generated by journalese. The paper will put into consideration, the essay by Cheryl Harris and Devon Carbado,” Loot or Find: Fact or Frame?” and also the story of C.P. Ellis by Studs Terkel. The paper will identify how frames and facts vary in relation to the issue of racism, there will be an identification of the role that the media plays in the magnification or otherwise of racism and the societal role in the whole issue of racism.

First there is the issue of fact and frame that surround racism. Harris and Cabado in their essay articulate this in a variety of ways, first they consider the role of the media in the exemplification of the events that were on going in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, second they explore the impact that frames had in determining and understanding the facts. In true, according to Harris and Carbado, there was a great deal of frame that was used to shun the commoners form the facts on the ground. The interpretational structures that both and unconsciously shaped how events were being seen during this period explain the stereotypical state in which blacks are placed. The African Americans were viewed in the eyes of criminality and prejudice was laid upon their actions. Form this essay we also learn that there is the attempt to want to believe that race is irrelevant and racism largely does not exist. This is however not a fact since as the essays point out frames are not static but rather dynamic. For instance the same frame pointed above could be countered by the other frame whereby, it is easy to frame a white person as finding food than it is framing a black person (p. 428), within the same surrounding and under the same conditions as a white person. From this we can truly say that frame does affect the way facts are viewed and their acceptance in the society.

The second aspect that this paper explores and which is also amplified by Harris and Carbado, is the role of the media in issues that are racist. In the turn of events at hurricane Katrina, the photographs that were taken and which did rounds in the mainstream media, created a stir both in America and within the international community. The media highly exaggerated the actions by the blacks


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