Paul D’Angelo and Donna Shaw

11Journalism as Framing

Abstract: This chapter discusses journalism as framing from two standpoints: the scholarly perspective, which describes how elements of a real-world process are investigated via conceptual definitions and theory integration, and the professional perspective, which describes how the frame concept is relegated in newsroom discourse to technical aspects of structuring and visualizing stories but nonetheless is utilized by industry observers to critique journalism’s social roles and functions. Based on these discussions, the chapter lays out five ways that journalism practices can inform the academic study of journalism as framing.

Keywords: journalism practice, news framing, framing theory


When media researchers refer to framing, by and large they are talking about analyzing journalism. The concepts “frame” and “framing” were first applied to journalism forty years ago in two studies of US print and broadcast newsrooms: Gaye Tuchman’s (1978) Making News and Todd Gitlin’s (1980) The Whole World is Watching. At the same time, “framing” supported Bad News, a project in which the Glasgow Media Group (1976) investigated British television news. Since then, the number of empirical studies on journalism as framing has burgeoned. A host of overview essays and book chapters has kept pace by discussing and reviewing the conceptual definitions, theoretical frameworks, and methodological approaches used in empirical research. A few of these articles advocate a theoretical framework deemed to best capture what news framing is all about.3 For example, Carragee and Roefs (2004) admonished researchers for neglecting power dynamics in newsgathering and called for integrating framing research with the hegemony thesis (see Vleigenthart and & Zoonen 2011). Mostly, however, overview essays and book chapters synthesize a patch of the empirical literature or review and critique aspects of news framing. For example, whereas Aalberg, Strömbäck, and de Vreese (2012) concentrated on strategy and game framing of politics, de Vreese and Lecheler (2012) inspected a range of established research areas, discussed recent work on the role of emotion in news framing, and reviewed methodological developments.

Stemming from Robert Entman’s (1993) important and often-cited essay, the wide application of framing to journalism studies is counterbalanced by the notion that this concept is freighted with psychological and sociological meanings, making it impossible to develop a single theoretical approach. For example, the literature reviews of empirical articles commonly refer to the “fragmentation” theme in a rhetorical effort to propound their purpose. Within edited volumes and journals, essays dedicated to clarifying the richness of news framing analysis become prone to demonstrating its apparent fragmentation. For example, in the prologue to Framing Public Life, Reese (2001) propounded a conceptual definition that he articulated both before (Reese & Buckelew 1995) and after (Reese 2010) the publication of that landmark book. Frames are “organizing principles … that work symbolically to meaningfully structure the social world” (p. 11), making them themes, motifs, and stereotypes that journalists use even when covering day-to-day events in spot news. Yet this culture-based thesis hardly unified the volume’s chapters. Furthermore, in the concluding chapter of Doing News Framing Analysis, D’Angelo (2010) argued, as he did before (D’Angelo 2002), that discoveries about the real-world process of news framing depend on an approach based on theoretical and methodological diversity. Not surprisingly, the chapters in that volume, like those in Framing Public Life, elucidated various ways researchers define framing, theorize it, and conduct news framing analysis.

In our view, the full news framing literature displays a thriving and healthy intellectual enterprise rather than one run aground by fragmentation. The reason why speaks to the first goal of this chapter, which is to remind scholars that a communication approach to news framing analysis relies on theory integration, not on testing a unified set of propositions of something called framing theory. In communication, an intrinsically practical discipline (Craig 1999), researchers are uniquely tasked with attaining systematic understandings of message-based processes by borrowing constructs from other disciplines and crafting them into coherent theoretical frameworks capable of productively guiding empirical inquiry. Knowledge grows when theoretical frameworks and conceptual definitions of key terms are examined, extended, and challenged in research conducted within the discipline’s existing and emerging specializations (Babrow 1993). Formal models are integral to these efforts. However, as Rosengren (1993) explained, “Formal models are empty, since they are expressed in terms of logical, mathematical, or statistical language”; thus, “it is very important to let substantive theory, formal models, and empirical data interact in a cumulative, spiraling process of knowledge building” (p. 9). In the discipline as a whole, no single theoretical framework – i.e. model plus conceptual definitions – can map all of the interlocking parts or satisfy all of the theoretical concerns that would derive a universalistic understanding of communication (Craig 1999). Nor do researchers who work within communication’s fields and sub-fields need to whittle the number of theoretical frameworks for knowledge in those specializations to grow.

Accordingly, as a communication perspective on journalism analysis, framing does not presuppose a universal theoretical framework or a single conceptual definition. It is imprudent to take strong steps in those directions, too, as Matthes and Kohring (2008) do in calling for a standardized operational definition at the expense of using conceptual definitions altogether, or as Cacciatore, Scheufele, and Iyengar (2016) do when they call for focusing on a strict definition of framing in terms of equivalency. These stances undermine the conditions for cumulativity that allow knowledge to grow (Rosengren 1993). One of the main arguments of this chapter, therefore, is that specific conceptual definitions of “frame” and “framing” productively guide empirical research precisely because they heuristically represent elements of the full news framing process (D’Angelo 2012).

As its second goal, this chapter aims to show that building solid theoretical frameworks and constructing competent conceptual definitions depend on how well framing researchers keep pace with journalism. Today, established newsroom routines and professional norms are evolving as a result of challenges and opportunities posed by technological convergence. In response to the steady migration of news outlets to online platforms there has been a concerted effort by academic researchers and industry observers to figure out where journalism’s standards and practices are headed (Lasorsa, Lewis & Holton 2012; Peer & Ksiazek 2011; Picard 2014). They give special attention to credentialed journalists, who gravitate to online sources in order to cull information into news. They also focus on audiences, who seek information in an environment where news is abundant, ambient, and participatory (Deuze, Bruns & Neuberger 2007; Hermida 2010, Singer et al. 2011), and in which getting informed depends largely on their perceptions of the technological affordances of news sites and devices (Schrøder 2015; Papacharissi 2015; Tewksbury & Rittenberg 2012). Daunting and consequential, these developments beckon news framing researchers to re-envision and adjust theoretical frameworks based on changing conditions.

Based on its two aims, this chapter is divided into two sections. The first section takes an analytical look at journalism as framing, beginning with the vital role that Erving Goffman’s work played in connecting micro-sociological conceptions of framing to journalism studies. The section then draws on existing models of news framing in order to define the four main interacting elements of the news framing process. In defense of the proposition that news framing analysis works best via theoretical and methodological diversity, the section goes on to explain how three seminal conceptual definitions of news framing, expansive yet inherently selective, are derived from the elements of this typology.

The second section undertakes something rarely done in overview articles: an extended discussion of analytical elements of news framing from the standpoint of journalism practice. What is immediately apparent in this discussion is that journalism textbooks and journalists talk about “frame” and “framing” only informally, if at all. Yet these perspectives illuminate fresh opportunities for news framing analysis in light of contemporary conditions and practices.4

2Journalism as framing: the analytical perspective

The frame concept took root in communication when theorists and researchers in the discipline’s fields dipped into intellectual streams within anthropology, sociology, psychology, and rhetoric, in order to understand the structuring power of context in human interactions. Whereas contexts govern situational communication within interpersonal, group, organizational, and cultural settings, contexts also enable messages meant to influence how other people, groups, and organizations think about and act towards people, topics, and issues within those situations. A review of the Encyclopedia of Communication Theory (Littlejohn & Foss 2009) indicates how deeply these notions are rooted within the discipline’s fields. In interpersonal communication, for example, “frame” supports Tracy’s construct practice in Action-Implicative Discourse Analysis (pp. 10–11) and Taylor’s construct conversation in Conversation and Text Theory (pp. 178–179). It also braces Anxiety/Uncertainty Management Theory (pp. 336–338), Conflict Management Theory (p. 167), Communicative Constitution of Organizations (pp. 177–178), Coordinated Management of Meaning (pp. 201–202), and Face Negotiation Theory (pp. 371–374).

Arguably, there was no greater influence on the adaptation of the frame concept to journalism studies than Erving Goffman’s (1974) Frame Analysis. In this landmark book, Goffman showed how small units of social structure cohered. For this he devised an approach to analyzing “strips” of behavior within social situations at the core of which was the frame.

Goffman (1974) defined frames as having two reciprocal dimensions. First, primary frameworks are socially sustained classification systems that “vary in their degree of organization” (p. 21). Upon cognitively locating and, at times, mentioning or considering a situation’s primary social framework, individuals commit to governing their communication behaviors, verbal and nonverbal, by its rules and norms. A primary social framework “subject[s] the doer to ‘standards,’ to social appraisal of his action based on its honesty, efficiency, economy, safety, elegance, tactfulness, good taste, and so forth” (p. 22).

Second, frames are verbal and nonverbal messages in which a person interprets a situation’s primary social framework. Goffman (1974) argued that everyday life is structured not only when a person follows a situation’s primary framework, but also when he or she puts features of it into a particular light, thereby framing it for others. To illustrate this process, he described mechanisms, such as keying and fabrication, by which people use messages instrumentally in order to influence how others interpret the situation and behave within it.

Goffman’s Frame Analysis is regularly cited as a progenitor of the sociological basis of news framing (Borah 2011; Pan & Kosicki 1993; Scheufele 1999). Because Tuchman’s framing research in the seminal book, Making News, was directly based on Goffman’s thesis that interpersonal situations are socially constructed, and because empirical studies occasionally cite Goffman’s notion of primary frameworks (Matthes 2009), Frame Analysis has an enduring place in the study of journalism as framing. Yet, as Gamson (1985) noted, while Goffman often clipped newspaper and magazine stories for clues about framing in everyday life, he “paid little attention to the framing involved in the reporting of news” (p. 617). Even Tuchman cautioned against applying Goffman’s ideas wholesale to news framing analysis, noting that he “explicitly rejects a concern for social organization per se” (pp. 194–195). Hence, she argued, his analytical technique cannot fully illuminate how journalists are constrained by, and actively invoke and interpret, newsroom norms in the course of “transform[ing] everyday occurrences into events” (p. 184).

Ever since Entman (1993) observed that frames are located in communicators, texts, receivers, and culture, a host of overview articles and book chapters, and even a handful of empirical articles, have endeavored to show the analytical components of the news framing process. Formal models include the process models of D’Angelo (2002: 880) and D. Scheufele (1999: 115), along with the modular model of B. Scheufele (2004: 402), all of which use graphical notation to show the interlocking elements and mechanisms of news framing. Sans graphical notation, Nelson and Willey’s (2001) list of the “species” of frames (pp. 246–247) is another good example.

Drawing from these models, this section discusses four frames – journalist, audience, issue, and news [content] – that, along with other subordinate frame types, constitute the main elements of the news framing process. Each frame is rooted in the two conceptual dimensions of frames. This makes each one a primary framework for other frames and a setting for instrumental and often strategic message framing by individuals and organizations. Like other model explications, we stress relationships among elements of the process in order to explicate its mechanisms. However, we also discuss specific conceptual definitions of these mechanisms, emphasizing how each one is not charged with articulating a single unified theory of news framing. As Reese (2007) stated, “Framing’s value does not hinge on its potential as a unified research domain but … as a provocative model that bridges parts of the field that need to be in touch with each other …” (p. 148).5 In our view, knowledge of news framing has advanced in what only appears to be a fragmented fashion because the bridging model encourages scholars to draw on diverse theoretical perspectives and build conceptual definitions of “frame” and “framing” tailored to specific elements and mechanisms of the news framing process.

2.1Elements and mechanisms of news framing

Journalist frames. Journalist frames are located within journalists’ thoughts about an issue, person, or event. Brüggemann (2014) defined journalist frames as “cognitive patterns of individual journalists” (p. 63), which is consistent with B. Scheufele (2004), who defined them as “consistent patterns of expectations” (p. 404) and a “consistent bundle of schemata” (p. 405). Functionally, a journalist frame forms a context for understanding, interpreting, and ultimately, expressing the facts of an issue, making it similar to the issue frames of sources who associate with journalists because they wish to use news stories as a technological platform for social advocacy and public persuasion. In practice, therefore, a journalist frame is an issue-specific position based on contextual orientations, such as values or belief systems (Nelson & Willey 2001), making it similar to an audience frame, another frame type in the news framing process.

In part, what distinguishes journalist frames from issue frames and audience frames, as B. Scheufele (2006) suggested, is that journalistic frames “are not idiosyncratic, but rather [are] established in newsroom discourse” (p. 66). This does not mean that audience frames are unpredictable unless one knows the news diet to which an individual is exposed. Indeed, much research shows that audience frames are a product of individuals’ selectivity of news and interpretation of frames in the news they select (e.g., Baden and de Vreese 2008; Gamson 1992). Rather, unlike audience frames and issue frames, the frame held by a journalist, particularly those who report news rather than editorialists and news hosts who are supposed to offer opinions, is not as important in processes of social influence as the conditions in which a journalist’s frame is formed. One reason for this is practical, for the norm of objectivity (discussed later) holds that journalists who report news are supposed to mute their own frames in the texts of stories. This norm, however, masks mechanisms of frame building that move the study of news framing beyond bias (i.e. journalism in which journalist frames infuse news), urging analysts instead to study it in terms of news cultures (Schudson 2011).

Frame building refers to the mechanisms through which journalists process information from various sources and transform that information into news (Scheufele 1999). Frame building has received more scholarly attention recently, though, as we discuss later, work on it still lags behind other areas of news framing analysis. B. Scheufele (2004) suggests that frame building is interactional in nature, forged in organizational settings. Here, what he calls newsroom frames develop out of formal and informal communication, creating a culture in which journalists are prone to discuss and evaluate a) organizational structures, such as news beats, b) norms and ideals, such as objectivity and autonomy, and c) journalists’ roles, such as information conduit, analyst, and advocate (see Weaver & Wilhoit 1991). Newsroom frames are contexts in which journalists’ frames are formed and expressed.

Frame building has also been conceived in macro-level terms as the societal, political, and economic conditions that shape newsroom culture of newsroom frames and journalist frames, which, ultimately, are the mechanisms that shape patterns of content (discussed later) called news frames (e.g., D’Angelo et al. 2013; Dunaway & Lawrence 2015; Strömbäck & Dimitrova 2006). Complementing this work are efforts that aim to learn about frame building ethnographically, irrespective of the direct influence of macro-level antecedents. For example, some research has used interview techniques to learn about journalist frames (e.g., Lewis & Reese 2009). Other times, researchers have accessed newsrooms to observe interactions between reporters and editors (e.g., Boesman et al. 2017; Van Hout & Macgilchrist 2010), tested theoretical propositions about how journalists process information they gather from sources (e.g., Brüggemann 2014; Scheufele 2006), and deduced mechanisms by which journalists transform source material into news (Tenenboim-Weinblatt & Baden 2016).

What some scholars refer to as cultural frames composed of themes, motifs, and stereotypes are also an important part of frame building research, for they make up the political and social environment surrounding newsrooms (Reese 2010). Although these frames could be considered a category all of their own, they can also be seen as primary frameworks for journalist- and newsroom frames. As Reese (2010) stated, “I regard frames as embedded within a web of culture, an image that naturally draws attention to the surrounding cultural context and the threads that connect them” (p. 18).

Issue frames. Issue frames (Nelson & Willey 2001; Sniderman & Theriault 2004) and their kin, advocacy frames (Entman 2004; Entman, Matthes & Pellicano 2009), are held and expressed by individuals who construct an argument from considerations, which are reasons for favoring one side of an issue over another (Zaller & Feldman 1992). Oftentimes expressed as an equivalency frame based on attributes (e.g., frame a positive or negative evaluation of a topic in terms of success/failure) or on goals (e.g., frame the desirability of a goal based on obtaining a gain or suffering a loss) rather than as strict choice-reversed risk options, issue frames come across as opinions or policy statements from individuals, groups, or organizations about a specific issue.

Even though issue frames normally encode valence, they are generally observed and tested as if they were frames of emphasis. As Sniderman and Theriault (2004) pointed out, all equivalency frames are “semantically distinct conceptions of exactly the same content” (p. 135). However, in most public affairs contexts, they state, “[I]t is difficult to satisfy this requirement of interchangeability of alternatives outside a narrow range of choices” (p. 135). This point alludes to the fact that not all equivalency frames are the same (Levin, Schneider & Gaeth 1998) – that, in fact, some issue frames encode valence in terms of goals and attributes, which operate differently than choice-reversed risk options commonly studied in work based on prospect theory (Kahneman & Tversky 1979).6

Issue frames can make strong, compelling arguments or weak, ineffectual arguments (Chong & Druckman 2007a). The term “compelling arguments” is often used by researchers who investigate second-level agenda-setting, which holds that news framing is a stage of the agenda-setting process (McCombs & Ghanem 2001). There are cogent repudiations to this approach on a theoretical level (Scheufele 2000), one of which questions the proposition that arguments are compelling when they are salient in news coverage. To Chong and Druckman (2007a), for example, a strong frame is not one that “makes the most noise”; rather, “a frame’s strength increases with its perceived persuasiveness” (p. 638). A focus on subtler discursive characteristics, such as emotional content and specific considerations, shifts the focus away from defining frames as “efficient bundling devices of [a topic’s] microattributes” (McCombs & Ghanem 2001: 74) toward one that stresses how issuerelated arguments hinge on values, belief systems, and other means with which to contextualize facts that stem from naming the issue, making causal assertions about it, and suggesting remedies for social problems it entails (Nelson & Willey 1991). In this vein, strong frames are akin to strategic frames (Entman, Matthes & Pellicano 2009), although that term risks confusing strong frames with strategy frames, a type of generic news frame (discussed later) first observed in political campaign news (Cappella & Jamieson 1997).

Issue frames are seen as being the province of news sources. These are individuals and organizations who: a) wish to persuade others, such as constituents, of the merits of their viewpoint; b) may be part of an organization that itself requires collective action frames in order to mobilize and cohere; and c) oftentimes seek the service of para-journalists, such as media consultants and public relations firms, in order to procure the publicizing power of news stories. Although they are frequently “toted” by news stories (Nelson & Willey 2001: 174), issue frames must be distinguished from news frames (discussed later) for two reasons. First, issue frames originate from organizations outside of the news media and often work in conjunction with collective action frames to achieve internal goals (e.g., Benford & Snow 2000; Noakes & Johnston 2005). Second, issue frames are often significantly altered after being processed by journalists via newsroom frames (Miller, Andsager & Riechert 1998; Tewksbury et al. 2000).

Audience frames. Audience frames and their kin, cognitive frames (Scheufele 2004) and individual frames (Scheufele 1999) are rooted in a person’s mental associations of words and ideas about a topic. According to Druckman (2001), audience frames are frames in thought, a term which distinguishes them from frames in communication entailed in news frames and issue frames. Typically, audience frames are conceived as being held by receivers of news, or news audiences, rather than by journalists or their sources (Entman 1993).

The terms “thought” vs. “communication”, along with the entailment that audience frames are neatly located within the minds of news receivers, present somewhat arbitrary analytical distinctions. “Frame in thought” is a misnomer in the sense that the content of audience frames depends not merely on internal cognitive mechanisms, but rather on social interactions between people who consume news, as well as interactions between those receive news and those who make it. Frames in thought are expressed in conversations, discussions, and arguments (Price, Nir & Cappella 2005); furthermore, they are shaped, reinforced, and revised as part of one’s political socialization (Baden & de Vreese 2008; Gamson 1992; Neuman, Just & Crigler 1992). Nowadays, too, the distinction between those who make news and those who consume it has blurred. Web-based media platforms facilitate public expression of audience frames, allowing erstwhile receivers of news to assume a journalistic role by making their observations available to wider publics, further obscuring the boundaries between “the people formerly known as the audience” and journalists (Rosen 2006).

Nonetheless, there are good reasons to distinguish audience frames from the other three frame types, for while everyone – journalists, sources, and audiences – can be a news consumer in the ecology of news framing, not everyone is beholden to the same framing mechanisms in the course of making and distributing news. For example, although this is still an empirical question, erstwhile audience members who become journalists (e.g., by using social media platforms to report news) are not influenced to the same degree by newsroom frames as professional journalists are. Moreover, whereas issue frames are typically studied in terms of the strategic construction and expression of advocacy viewpoints, audience frames are typically studied in terms of memory and storage (Chong & Druckman 2007a). For these reasons, the study of audience framing is centrally concerned with understanding cognitive mechanisms within individuals exposed to news stories, and ultimately, to news frames.7

Just as not all words or visuals in a news story contribute to a news frame (Entman 1991), not all mental associations constitute an audience frame. Regarding strong frames, for example, one’s mental associations become more coherent by virtue of how well they are organized within cognitive nodes, which, as noted before from the standpoint of issue advocates, makes values (Nelson & Willey 2001; Shah, Domke & Wackman 1997) and moral and religious beliefs (Dardis et al. 2008; Domke & Shah 1995) important in determining whether an individual’s mental associations rise to the level of a strong frame.

In survey and experimental designs, researchers typically investigate audience frames as learning and opinion outcomes shaped by exposure to news frames. Yet, while news coverage of a topic may activate the cognitive nodes that house an audience frame, an individual will not deeply process that information or use it to express an opinion unless s/he deems it to be applicable to their own frame (Nelson, Oxley & Clawson 1997; Price, Tewksbury & Powers 1997). Thus, shaped by news coverage and by conversation with others, audience frames are expressed, often with persuasive intent, within deliberative settings that may be interpersonal, technologically mediated, or a combination of the two (Gamson 1992; Neuman, Just & Crigler 1992).

News frames. News frames or media frames, terms which some scholars distinguish (Brüggemann 2014; D’Angelo 2010) and others do not (D. Scheufele 1999; B. Scheufele 2004), refer to written, spoken, graphical, and visual message modalities that journalists use to contextualize an event, issue, and/or person within one or more stories. In practice, news stories in all media – print, broadcast, and online – routinely blend these modalities together. Yet news framing researchers identify visual frames as a special type of modality-based news frame (Coleman 2010). Visual frames lack an explicit propositional syntax (Messaris & Abraham 2001). Hence, articulating their meaning is dependent to one degree or another on spoken and written language. Significant strides have been made to understand the syncretic unit of visual frames – e.g., see Graber’s (1994) early gestalt coding technique; Choi and Lee’s (2006) comparison of scene- and story-level frames; Parry’s (2010) analysis of visuals and captions in British news coverage of the 2006 Israeli-Lebanon conflict; and Grabe and Bucy’s (2009) analysis of image-bites in political campaign news. Also, researchers continue to figure out how visual frames affect audiences (Arpan et al. 2006; Geise & Baden 2015).

Like issue frames, news frames are frames in communication and are typically conceptualized as being frames of emphasis. Researchers distinguish between generic news frames and topic-specific news frames, which they mainly study on word-based modalities of news.

As the name implies, generic news frames, also called formal frames (Scheufele 2004), are generalizable across the myriad events (or “pegs”) journalists use to cover different issues in spot news, sometimes using many “angles” for complicated, contentious, and ongoing issues. Taking into consideration the integral role issue frames play in the news framing process, scholars usually define generic news frames in connection to how sources frame issues.

Specifically, generic news frames contextualize issue frames by virtue of the information-processing mechanisms of journalist frames and the organizational procedures of newsroom frames. Thus, those frames are the analytical basis for understanding a generic frame, not a consideration and related values a source uses when talking about an issue a journalist may cover. Put another way, generic frames are what journalists do to issue frames. Iyengar (1991) laid the groundwork for analysis of generic news frames in experiments in which he explored how presentational formats common within journalism, called episodic vs. thematic news frames used for spot news and backgrounders, respectively, affect audience attributions of responsibility for causing and fixing social problems. Strategy and issue frames are another type of generic news frame. First observed by Patterson (1993) and experimentally examined by Cappella and Jamieson (1997), these frames stem from journalist- and newsroom frames that devalue the importance of candidates’ issue positions in their political discourse and instead contextualize campaign events in terms of character, political motivation, and campaign tactics. Other generic news frames are based on time and locality (Muschert & Carr 2006) and on news values, such as conflict and consequences (Price & Tewksbury 1997).

Topic-specific news frames, also called issue-specific frames (de Vreese 2005) and content-related frames (Scheufele 2004) are similar to generic news frames in they also emerge from journalist frames and newsroom frames. Unlike generic frames, however, they are the journalistic counterpart to sources’ issue frames. Therefore, topic-specific news frames are defined in relation to something journalists do – re: cover issues via “angles” – rather than something sources do, and they are typically observed as facets of a topic or as themes extrapolated from attributes of the topic. For example, in Nisbet’s (2010) typology of eight news frames that often appear in science policy debates, there is an economic-development frame (re: facet of topic) and a conflict/strategy frame (re: theme extrapolated from a topic). This overarching difference masks a common research strategy, however. For both frame types, generic and topic-specific, researchers employ quantitative and qualitative content analytical techniques that rely upon sets of keywords or phrases as the framing devices to identify the news frame (D’Angelo 2017).

Researchers preponderantly content analyze and experimentally test topic-specific news frames over generic frames (Borah 2011). Via content analysis, framing researchers observe topic-specific news frames in four main sites: a) within topic domains – e.g., Nisbet’s (2010) science news typology or McLeod and Detenber’s (1999) protest paradigm, b) for key events bounded by start and end dates determined by real-world circumstances and/or a methodology-based decision (Bennett, Lawrence & Livingston 2006; Watkins 2001), c) for individual issues in which time, key events, or both in attention cycles, are built into the design (Nisbet, Brossard & Kroepsch 2003), and d) for individual issues where time and key events are not built into the design, but other external variables are (D’Angelo et al. 2013; Reis 2008). Researchers use both inductive and deductive approaches in this work.8

At bottom, the analytical difference between topic-specific and generic news frames is more subtle than stark. Reese (2007) argues that topic-specific news frames lack the organizing and structuring properties evident in generic news frames, making them an artifact of subjective observational techniques. However, because they stem from journalist frames and newsroom frames, topic-specific news frames also signify the structuring capacity of a journalist’s own thoughts and of newsroom norms. For example, Reese’s own work on the “militaristic” frame in US war coverage (Reese & Buckalew 1995) illustrated how a thematic topic-specific frame germinated in coverage of a specific event. Similarly, Gitlin (1980) showed how journalists “ideologically domesticated” (p. 13) the New Left movement of the 1960s via the specific framing devices of trivialization, marginalization, and polarization.

News framing researchers commonly conceive of generic news frames and topic-specific news frames as being latent structures of meaning. As a result, these frames have been variously characterized as a central organizing idea (Gamson & Modigliani 1989), an organizing principle (Gitlin 1980; Reese 2001), a narrative (Bennett & Edelman 1985; Entman 1991), a macro-attribute (McCombs & Ghanem 2001), an ideology (Hackett 1984), or a story theme (Pan & Kosicki 1993). Photographs and moving scenes, easy to spot in news stories, can also be hard to analyze for their framing functions (Coleman 2010). Thus, visual icons that frame an object by virtue of cultural associations are also latent structures of meaning (Aday, Cluverius & Livingston 2005).

2.2Conceptual definitions of news framing

Conceptual definitions explicate the relationship between two or more types of frames. Many studies adapt existing conceptual definitions of “frame” and “framing”, the best of which are expansive and integrative: they bring different frames together and employ other constructs to explain how these frames relate to one another. But even the best conceptual definitions are oriented toward specific types of frames and toward specific ways of defining those frames. Also, the normative purview of a conceptual definition – how journalists should behave professionally, how news should cover topics, and how journalism should treat other institutions – is another source of contingency. Empirical research on news framing cannot proceed without conceptual definitions, even as each one offers a selective portrayal of the full process and purveys a particular normative agenda.

For example, in proposing that news framing operates through a process of cascading network activation, Entman (2003) defined framing as “the central process by which government officials and journalists exercise political influence over each other and over the public” (p. 417; see also, Entman 2004). Illustrated in a formal model, (2003: 419; 2004: 10), cascading activation shows that actors on each level, including political elites, media organizations, and the public, make their contribution to the mix and flow of ideas.

Entman used networks, a concept borrowed from social psychology, to refer not only to the composition of audience frames, but also to coherent patterns of public opinion, issue frames, and news frames. Although these applications stretch the conceptual boundary of networks, Entman’s framework coheres because it brings to bear the framing functions he had previously articulated. For each level of cascading network activation, Entman (2003) stated, “Framing entails selecting and highlighting some facets of events or issues, and making connections among them so as to promote a particular interpretation, evaluation, or solution” (p. 417).

Useful and insightful, cascading network activation nonetheless offers a selective theoretical framework of the news framing process, for it glosses over cognitive subroutines of attitude formation (see Chong & Druckman 2007a). Also, it hardly recognizes the role of values in issue framing (Nelson & Willey 2001) and it overlooks some of the newsroom frames that shape how journalists process information from sources (see, e.g., Brüggemann 2014).

Two important studies by Gamson and Modigliani (1987, 1989) also promulgate a conceptual definition of “framing” that is simultaneously encompassing and selective. They locate news framing within “interpretive packages” that compete within an “issue culture” comprised of sponsor activities, news media coverage, and public opinion. Their definition bridges journalist frames, advocacy frames, and news frames: “At [the core of a media package] is a central organizing idea, or frame, for making sense of relevant events, suggesting what is at issue” (1989: 3, emphasis in original). Here, “frame” is defined from a constructionist standpoint, which stipulates that no single actor commands the frame idea even as all of them struggle to define it (D’Angelo 2002). Journalists, issue advocates, and audiences interpret issues – and articulate frames – by using framing devices, such as metaphors and catchphrases, and reasoning devices, such as statements about the cause and consequences of the issue.9

Gamson and Modigliani’s conceptual definition of a media package is often cited in content analyses of news frames (Matthes 2009). Yet it has also been singled out as being too vague to guide empirical inquiry (Entman, Matthes & Pellicano 2009; Matthes & Kohring 2008). This chapter repudiates that argument on grounds that it undermines the vital role theoretical frameworks play in parsing the news framing process into manageable, researchable pieces. Media packages hinge on interpretation and symbolic contests, constructs that focus theory and research on specific normative concerns, such as why some political elites more than others are able to successfully propound “contestable categories”, garner press coverage, and shape public opinion (Edelman 1993).

In a different vein, two important articles by Price and colleagues (Price, Tewksbury & Powers 1997; Price & Tewksbury 1997) tie together journalistic frames, news frames, and audience frames into a single formal model. The model binds journalistic frames to news frames with news values. This construct is familiar to most journalists, who learn that conflict, consequences, and human interest make for good story telling. Additionally, the model uses two other constructs, activation and applicability, to bind audience frames to journalistic and news frames. As discussed under audience frames, these constructs refer to a sub-process that begins when an individual’s exposure to a news story or series of stories brings to mind topic-based thoughts that include how the topic is being contextualized by news frames. But because individuals “do not slavishly follow the framing of issues in the mass media” (Neuman, Just & Crigler 1992: 77), how they process the news frame depends on the extent to which they judge that their own audience frame is applicable, or relevant to, the framed topic.

Political scientists interested in news framing have expanded the activation-applicability framework of news framing over the past twenty years (see Shah et al. 2009, for a useful summary and formal model). In one major development, issue frames are tied to news frames via competitive issue framing (Chong & Druckman 2007a, 2007b; Sniderman & Theriault 2004). This framework references the journalistic norm of balancing issue frames in spot news, or coverage of events of the day, and in coverage of ongoing issues or events. Strong issue frames in particular induce predictable patterns of opinion expression. Based on this development, journalism as framing has been defined as the process in which some of a person’s prior beliefs about an issue are re-weighted upon exposure to news that purveys “both sides” of an issue in sourced or paraphrased arguments of varying strength (Chong & Druckman 2007a, 2007b). This conceptual definition of framing, useful as it is, is still provisional in light of the fact that it perfunctorily deals with journalist- and newsroom frames.

In sum, conceptual definitions of news framing are rigorous, expansive, and selective guideposts for empirical inquiry. However, as noted, that is not all they are. Conceptual definitions are also bound to normative issues and concerns. For example, whereas Entman’s conceptual definition of news framing is motivated by a concern that framing by political elites tends to abrogate press independence, the definition of Price and colleagues, along with subsequent articulations, deals with a particular democratic assumption – that news must cover public issues fully and accurately for democracy to thrive. Framing researchers are thus concerned with “the perils and possibilities of the news media’s role as a political actor in the deliberative settings of policy making, political and social activism, and campaigns” (D’Angelo 2010: 357). This makes articulating clear theoretical frameworks important.

3Journalism as framing: the professional perspective

At the core of the news framing process lie journalism, journalists, and news. According to Schudson (2011), journalism is “the business or practice of regularly producing and disseminating information about contemporary affairs of public interest and importance” (p. 3). Suitable for our purposes, this definition readily applies to today’s fragmented, high-choice media environment consisting of newspapers and broadcast news, their websites and mobile apps, and online-only news organizations. Journalists are the reporters and correspondents, editors and producers, who gather and process information from documents and other people. Produced in story formats and distributed via technological mediation, news is “information which is transmitted from sources to audiences, with journalists – who are both employees of bureaucratic commercial organizations and members of a profession – summarizing, refining, and altering what becomes available to them from sources in order to make the information suitable for their audiences” (Gans 1979: 80).

The news framing process pivots around the information-processing behaviors of journalists, the information-dissemination needs of news sources, message patterns in news items, and journalism’s systemic integration into other institutions within society. Most of these elements of news framing are ably illustrated in the theoretical models mentioned earlier. However, the burgeoning scholarly news framing literature consistently points out that work on frame building lags behind work in other areas. Research “has not determined how media frames are formed or the types of frames that result from this process”, Scheufele (1999) asserted. More recently, de Vreese and Lecheler (2012) stated, “[T]here is only little systematic information available on how news frames actually emerge” (p. 298). Borah (2011) corroborated these assertions empirically in a content analysis of 379 framing articles published in 93 peer-reviewed communication journals, in which she found that only 2.3% studied frame production directly.

The subtext of the call for more work on frame building is that news framing researchers somehow give short shrift to journalism,10 even as they are good at a) observing textual and/or visual news frames in coverage of topics, b) testing the direct effects of news frames on audience frames (the frame setting phase in D. Scheufele’s [1999] model), and c) determining the factors within audience frames that moderate and mediate direct effects of news frames (the individual-level effects phase in D. Scheufele’s [1999] model). Accordingly, one place to look for guidance about how to advance news framing analysis is the journalism profession itself. Admittedly, this is an unlikely source because the framing concept plays a muted role in journalism education, in the work routines of most journalists, and in regulating how journalists interpret newsroom norms when doing their job. However, in this changing and challenging news environment, where established practices and norms meet technological convergence, are avenues for moving news framing research forward.

3.1News framing in the newsroom

Writing and reporting are a print journalist’s core skills. In today’s newspaper industry, editors demand flexibility in adapting their stories to online platforms. At a minimum, the Missouri Group (2014) stated, journalists at a growing number of newspapers “are being asked to turn in two versions of their stories, one for the newspaper and one for the paper’s website” (p. 243). This illustrates the trend in most newspapers to abandon a once-exclusive dependency on “shovelware”, or republishing what will appear in print. Instead, most newspapers have implemented a Web-first (or digital-first) approach that relies upon a still-evolving set of storytelling techniques. Combining “a broadcaster’s sense of urgency and immediacy [with] a print reporter’s in-depth, detailed approach” (Stovall 2015: 125), reporting for the Web mandates a hybrid approach favoring immediacy (e.g., shorter stories with easy to scan headlines), interactivity (e.g., clickable links to other stories and source documents), and innovative use of multimedia (e.g., clickable audio, graphics, and video packages) (The Missouri Group 2014, ch. 12). As Rich (2016) summarized, “There is no single way to write for the Web” (p. 236).

Openness to experimentation pertains not only to newspaper websites, but also to Web-only sites that have arisen in the beat-oriented tradition of newspapers (see,, and in the recent blogging tradition (see It also goes for print-originated Web-only news sites (e.g., Atlantic Media’s Quartz at; “The Upshot” at, for print or broadcast news organizations with separate Web operations (see or, and for online sites with a niche orientation akin to magazine publishing (e.g., and www.alldigitocracy). Micro-blogging the news via Twitter feeds from reporters, analysts, and commentators has engendered even more kinds of experimentation. All of these news sources vie for readers accustomed to searching for information on computers and mobile devices, many of whom are “accidental news junkies” who reach news sites through social media feeds on Facebook and Twitter (Thompson 2015).

Online news sources stretch the professional boundaries of journalism yet maintain a connection to journalistic norms. Whether an online site covers news already published in print or aired on broadcast or cable (e.g.,, publishes original reporting (, or does some combination of the two (e.g.,, it still falls somewhere within the journalistic tradition based on objectivity, verification, and truth (Kovach & Rosenstiel 2001).11 Thus, even after acknowledging the different techniques and aims of web-based reporting, Rich (2016) reminds us that, “Good reporting is similar in any medium” (p. 234). And so, we speculate, are journalists’ views about framing across different media.

If asked directly about framing, journalists who work for newspapers, their website counterparts, and most online-only publications would most likely respond that they think of it in terms of structure, as in, “how am I going to frame this story?” Here, the term “framing” loosely refers to the practical matter of constructing a solid lead (or “lede”) and appropriate nut paragraph (or “nut graph”) for an event, series of events, or issue pegged to an event, any one of which is a typical news topic. Together, the lead provides an angle that hooks the reader’s interest, while the nut graph fills in explanatory details related to the 5 W’s and one H – who, what, when, where, why, and how – that are meant to hold the reader’s interest.

Pushed to consider how composing a solid lead and nut graph slaps an interpretive frame on occurrences, however, most journalists would be reluctant to see this process in the conceptual terms academics use. Even the thorniest narrative ingredients, the “why” and “how”, while set up in the nut graph, are fleshed out with source’s views and other physical records, journalists would argue. And, “make no mistake about it”, wrote The Missouri Group (2014), “there are hundreds of places to find information” (p. 112). Still, to journalists, stories convey facts not frames. An academic might counter that these source-based facts are seeded with issue frames – and many journalists would concede that they do look to sources for purposes of framing, either to suggest one or tell them that their approach to the story in the lead and nut graph is correct. But at this point, the objectivity norm kicks in: Finding and reporting facts becomes a practical matter of judging the expertise of sources and then comparing that expertise against their own evolving knowledge, which is where journalist frames take shape, according to academics. This process reassures journalists that their own views (or frames) do not overtake the writing and the story. It also reproves bad decisions, such as being locked into a position or handling information unfairly.

Interpreting the objectivity norm permits journalists to scrutinize what sources say. This newsroom frame protects them from the perception that they are advocating a source’s ideological commitment to a particular set of facts about an issue. In turn, this frame inoculates reporters from political bias. In fact, to many journalists, the frame concept evokes bias. Reporters who adhere to the norm of independence strive neither to reveal their own political leanings nor to become indoctrinated by their sources.12 Thus, although academics have long distanced the framing concept from political bias (Entman 1991; Hackett 1984; Schudson 2011), journalists concerned about being politically biased avoid thinking about writing news in terms of framing.

Even when they do not discuss framing, industry observers note how difficult it is for journalists to avoid the appearance of framing in the course of covering and contextualizing issue frames. Take hashtags, which are labels or metadata tags used on social networking and microblogging services. Hashtags designated as event-oriented, humorous, and breaking-news have become an important information source for journalists who work in legacy and online news organizations (Buttry 2012). Meredith Clark, a regular columnist for the Poynter Institute, a non-profit school for journalism, claims that all news organizations should use Twitter and other social media services in order to identify diverse voices, particularly for issues in which hashtags serve an activist role. Hinting at the academic’s contention that news organizations cannot not frame events when they select and cover activist hashtags (Qin 2015), Friedman (2014) noted, “As activists have clamored to create and promote hashtags to draw attention to their issues – so-called ‘hashtag activism’ – journalists have had to figure out when a Twitter trend merits coverage” (para. 2). In this and other circumstances, treating hashtags as sources lends to the perception that journalists and news organizations are themselves framing an event as a result of inserting them into stories. As Shadi Rahimi (2015), deputy producer for AJ+, a “global news community for the connected generation” (, pointed out, “Using either ‘uprising’ or ‘riots’ as a media organization [in our coverage of the Baltimore protests] meant we appeared to be aligning ourselves with a viewpoint” (para. 18).

Regarding photojournalism, the technical connection between framing and photography makes it reasonable to think that photojournalists might consider analytical aspects of framing. Photographs require solid composition and they need to convey meaning. So, photo editors and staff crop still images, caption them with a “cutline”, and place them near stories published in print and online. Yet journalism textbooks merely hint at the role of framing in photojournalism. Stovall (2015) stated, “Composition can be used to arrange the elements so that what is important about the picture – or what the photo[journalist] wants to tell the viewers – is emphasized” (p. 174). Yet the message a photograph is meant to communicate, which is itself a potential news frame, is subsumed by the newsroom norm that photographs are merely meant to contextualize words – to “give life and form to the words journalists use”, as Stovall put it (p. 173).

Framing also has a non-analytical connection to story production with regard to visuals and video in broadcast or streamed news. “The concept of framing simply means understanding what will look good when you turn the camera on”, instructs Stovall (2015: 157). Like print reporting, this nod to framing indicates that visuals play a supportive role in contextualizing spoken words. “Good pictures … do not need a lot of words – just good ones”, Barnas and White (2013) said, adding, “Fill in the blank, but do not overpower the video” (p. 231).

Moving up the organizational ladder in the television newsroom, the director leading the production crew is the “alter ego and partner in crime” of the producer (Tuggle, Carr & Huffman 2014: 194), who “frames the entire newscast” (Barnas & White 2013: 251, emphasis added). Yet broadcast news textbooks rarely if ever discuss framing with regard to the producer’s tasks, which include setting up a newscast’s rundown and segment blocks, maintaining story flow (re: “peaks and valleys”), pacing anchor voice-overs and reporter “packages”, and keying graphics and other visual production elements.

In sum, journalists in different media and on different rungs of the organizational ladder are comfortable with “framing” as long as it pertains to techniques for structuring and visualizing stories. But they have a hard time with analytical distinctions and theoretical frameworks. Pushed to think about journalism as an exercise in framing, some journalists might concede that stock narrative templates like conflict and human interest are framing devices. Or, some might agree that framing is involved in the practical matters of recognizing good quotes, constructing a solid lead for a story, or composing a still photograph. Interestingly, some observers feel that framing in the analytical sense could be a prime asset for printed newspapers in the contemporary hyper-competitive news industry. As Meyer (2008) argued, “… the information age has created a demand for processed information. We need [newspapers] to put it in context, give it theoretical framing and suggest ways to act on it” (para. 27). Yet from directors and editors to analysts and contributors to reporters and correspondents, most journalists who think their job is to report facts, curate information, inform audiences, monitor the powerful, sustain communities, find truth, and set the record straight (Kovach & Rosenstiel 2001; The Missouri Group 2014, ch. 1) – that is, journalists whose professional culture and newsroom norms oblige them to value objectivity, skepticism, accountability, and autonomy – would question and even reject the notion that, fundamentally, producing news is an exercise in framing.

3.2Journalism practice as a context for framing research

Researchers routinely take cues from newsroom norms, routines, and story formats. Yet the admitted blind spot of frame building beckons scholars to re-calibrate how we look to journalism – not simply how we look at journalism – for ideas going forward.

The logical place to look to for ideas about frame building is at the primary frameworks that journalists in different organizational roles interpret when doing their job. Thus, research should focus on journalist frames and the newsroom frames that surround them. News framing researchers already well aware of this point use methodologies such as newsroom observations and reconstruction interviews to get close to the news production process (e.g., Van Hout & Macgilchrist 2010). Concerted efforts to study journalism as framing ethnographically provide an indispensable complement to findings from surveys, content analyses, and experiments.

Accordingly, we will sketch five ways that journalism practices can inform the study of news framing. First, pay attention to beats in order to plan and execute integrative news framing analysis. A beat is essentially a station, often a physical one, such as City Hall, a police precinct, or a sports locker room, where reporters talk to sources and gather news. Beats are more prevalent in newspaper reporting than in local television news, where general assignment reporting mostly occurs. “Covering beats is among the most important work in journalism”, wrote The Missouri Group (2014), adding, “… today’s reporters are trying to do more, on several platforms, in less time” (p. 287). Even academic studies that focus on frame building tend to ignore how the title of a beat frames the questions reporters ask, the information they solicit, and the generic news frames they use – points that underwrote Tuchman’s (1978) seminal study. Paying attention to beats could help researchers explore journalist frames in terms of expertise they acquire from interpreting sources’ issue frames. Interviews and observational studies could be devised to see how beats invoke newsroom frames, too, because the way a journalist interprets norms like objectivity could shape generic- and topic-specific news frames they use.

Second, pay attention to story formats and the ordering of stories in order to identify generic news frames and refine methodological designs for studying their effects on audiences. To be sure, significant theoretical advancements have been made along these lines. For example, Shah et al. (2004) clarified framing effects via the “inherently intersecting context” (p. 103) of thematic/episodic frames and other generic frames; Gross (2008) found that framing effects of thematic/episodic frames were mediated by the emotions they engendered within individuals. However, content analysts and experimentalists tend to lose track of conventions born from journalistic frames and newsroom frames that give rise to patterns of generic news frames within print, television, and online news. For example, newspapers commonly layer a story (on the same page or within the same section) about the details of an episode alongside one that covers its historical background and/or its sociological trends. Online story links work this way as well. In television news, a reporter’s package, or set-up story, will cover an event, followed by a segment in which a panel of experts, including analysts and contributors who work for the network, discuss issues related to the event. Important advancements in news framing analysis lie in mapping the format landscape of generic frames, linking formatting principles to newsroom frames, and examining effects of these frames on audience frames.

Third, pay attention to ways that television news producers and reporters blend spoken content with still photographs and moving images in the course of making anchor voice-overs (some with SOT’s, or sound bites) and reporter packages. As noted, textbooks teach that matching words and visuals relies on the deft art of burnishing what is seen with what is said. In some respects, this practice dovetails with scholars’ conceptions of visual framing. Yet researchers overlook much of what actually happens in the visual-rich environments of network, cable, and online news. For example, journalist- and newsroom frames could be evident in conventions by which on-air interviewers use video segments as the basis for questions to sources. Also, the technique of continuously looping video during breaking news (re: “wallpapering”) requires more attention insofar as the words often will not directly refer to the visuals.

Fourth, pay attention to frame distribution in today’s media-rich, high-choice news environment. Frame distribution starts when stories originating in newspapers and on television news are put on company websites and then grabbed by an aggregator and/or covered by an online site. This process brings the audience squarely into play, for just as in days past when people physically shared a newspaper, in the contemporary news environment of search engines and social media, people can now easily access and share news items (Tewksbury & Rittenberg 2012). Frame distribution opens up many possibilities for work on frame building. For example, it is important to examine whether news frames change in form and/or intensity when print and TV journalists, along with Web technicians, reconfigure stories for company websites in the mode of “digital-first” (e.g., Keith, Schwalbe & Silcock 2009). Also, since “most readers want stories tailored to take advantage of the Web’s considerable power” (The Missouri Group 2014: 244), it is important to understand how leads, nut graphs, and storyboards – places where news frames reside – are fleshed out with links, multi-media, and social media markers, all in order to create “the mosaic [that will] attract readers” (p. 248) used to valuing interactivity and innovation when consuming news on mobile devices. Finally, because frame distribution allows the audience to participate in news production (Singer et al. 2011), it is important to investigate not only how people make news via blogs, Twitter, and other social media, but also how they are influenced by messages that introduce, link to, or accompany news that otherwise frames topics, events, and issues (Scholl et al. 2016).

Fifth, pay attention to metacoverage for clues about ways that legacy and online news sites inspect how journalists cover events and issues. Research has already shown that the framing concept applies to news in which aspects of news organizations and patterns of news coverage are themselves part of the story (e.g., Esser and D’Angelo 2003). And, while a cottage industry of work within the framing approach (e.g., Wise & Brewer 2010; de Vreese & Elenbaas 2008) and outside of it (e.g., Berkowitz 1992) has explored news about journalism, scholars should take heed of its accelerated pace in today’s crowded news environment. Metacoverage extends and interprets journalistic objectivity. It is a sign that accountability and transparency are at a premium when news organizations proliferate and journalistic standards quiver as a result. A good place to look for relevant news items is online news sites, some of which actively purvey the view that news media ignore certain stories and story angles (e.g., This makes metacoverage a regular feature on them – e.g.,’s remarkable coverage of the Orlando shootings (e.g., Wile 2016). Much can be learned about journalist frames, newsroom frames, cultural frames, issue frames, and audience frames by looking to the very sources that provide the texts for analysis.


“Framing is as central a concept as there is in the study of news”, Schudson (2011) summarized. “[T]o acknowledge that news stories frame reality is also to acknowledge that it would be humanly impossible to avoid framing” (p. 29). This chapter contributes to the lively overview literature that reflects on the body of empirical literature and on the body of overview articles. One aim of this chapter was to elucidate the elements of the news framing process, thereby encouraging researchers to analyze those pieces with integrative theoretical frameworks. Here, we agree with Shah et al. (2009: 93–94) that standardizing conceptual and operational definitions can be a good idea – but only under conditions that encourage the accumulation of knowledge. These conditions are maintained and strengthened when theoretical frameworks generate research on facets of the news framing process, all while competing with one another in light of empirical findings.

This chapter also provided scholars with a direct perspective on journalism as framing from the standpoint of the news profession. It might seem odd to think that such a perspective is even necessary, for all news framing studies say something about journalism in their literature review, methodology, results, and interpretation of results. However, just as journalists shy away from analytical perspectives on frame and framing, scholars tend to lose track of the myriad ways that journalistic practices could inform the research process. We do not need to impute our analytical frameworks on the people and organizations we study in order to learn something from them about the processes our frameworks bring to light.

Further reading

Two edited volumes provide a solid foundation on journalism as framing: Framing Public Life: Perspectives on Media and our Understanding of the Social World (2001, edited by Stephen D. Reese, Oscar H. Gandy, Jr., and August Grant), and Doing News Framing Analysis: Empirical and Theoretical Perspectives (2010, edited by Paul D’Angelo and Jim A. Kuypers). Other excellent books include those by Robert Entman, Projections of Power: Framing News, Public Opinion, and U. S. Foreign Policy (2004, University of Chicago Press), and Douglas M. McLeod and Dhavan V. Shah, News Frames and National Security: Covering Big Brother (2015, Cambridge University Press).


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