Select eight newspaper stories about one type of violent crime

Select eight newspaper stories about one type of violent crime–murder, rape, sexual abuse, or some other form of interpersonal violence of interest to you.  Stories must be about real crime incidents.  There should be no more than two stories on the same crime event.

Select eight newspaper stories about one type of violent crime

The final requirement for the class consists of a content analysis of newspaper stories on violent crime or on television or film cartoons.  The recommended page limit for this write-up is six pages (including data). This assignment is worth a maximum of 70 points.

OPTION ONE:
Select eight newspaper stories about one type of violent crime–murder, rape, sexual abuse, or some other form of interpersonal violence of interest to you.  Stories must be about real crime incidents.  There should be no more than two stories on the same crime event.  No editorial articles should be used. The news stories should be significant in length, or featured stories, and not one paragraph blurbs. Articles can be selected from different newspapers (accessed online or via hard copy).

Your task is to analyze what is presented in each news story and to search for patterns.  The focus should be on how violence is reported to the public, more than on the crimes themselves.  Simple summaries of the news stories are insufficient.  You want to compare the structure of the crime news across cases.

Begin with a careful discussion of your sampling strategy.  Why did you select the cases for analysis that you did?  Be creative in your sampling method.

     Then address the following:

Firstly, How is violence constructed for the reading public?

Secondly, What kinds of descriptions are given about the violence?

Thirdly, What words are used to describe what occurred?  How graphic are the stories?  What is the image of the perpetrators conveyed?  Or the victims?

Fourthly, How much detail is provided about the circumstances of the violence?

Further, Any information on where the acts occurred?  Is there a reporting formula across stories that you can discern?

Also, Are there any myths about violence that are perpetuated?

Additionally, What do the articles state about why the crimes happened?

Moreover, Drawing on your experience in criminal justice, what two theories would you use to explain this form of interpersonal violence?

Additionally, Here you can draw from the class or from any theories you have learned outside of class.  Significant discussion of the two theories is require.  Mere mention of theories is inadequate.

Besides, What impact do you think the stories might have on fear of crime and on violent behavior for those who read them?

Furthermore, How do you think the articles might shape what the public thinks about violence?

Also, What do you think the articles should have told readers that was not included?

Finally, How do you assess and feel about how the media reports violence?

This is a research project and your write-up should be organized in that fashion.

The paper should include:
(1) an introduction of the issue and statement of the problem being studied;
(2) a rich discussion of your research methodology (why you selected the items you did and how you counted and analyzed the data);
(3) a discussion of your findings or the results of the research; and
(4) a conclusion where you discuss implications.  One way you can organize the discussion of your findings is by using a case study approach (Story 1, 2…) followed by a conclusion with a summary of overall patterns.  Or, you can list your major findings, with a discussion about each one, providing examples from various cases.
(5) Double-spaced, Times New Roman, 12pt font, APA format, Include title and cover page.

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