Methodological Perspectives and Empirical Applications
Edited By Inés Olza Moreno, Óscar Loureda Lamas and Manuel Casado
Representation in the Spanish Press of the Political Debate about Wearing Full Islamic Veils in Public Spaces: Inés Olza
Representation in the Spanish Press of the Political Debate about Wearing Full Islamic Veils in Public Spaces1
The purpose of this chapter is to explore the interplay between media and political communication, which can be analysed from at least two different perspectives: how political discourses are represented in the media, and how the eventual influence of media on political action and/or discourse may be discerned and defined.
This interplay is illustrated by reference to coverage in the main Spanish newspapers (El País, El Mundo and ABC) of the approval – in Lleida Council, Vendrell Council and the national Senate in Spain (May-June 2010) – of three controversial political motions enacting a ban on the wearing of full veils (burkas and niqabs) in public spaces. The principal argumentative strategies and ideological implications underlying these motions are examined, and their reflection – or manipulation – in selected news texts explored.
The analysis shows that such news coverage highlights certain argumentative implications that were deliberately masked in the political motions; and that, as may be expected, the representation of political discourse(s) also depends on the ideological orientation of each newspaper.