The “Chinese Virus”: A Critical Discourse Analysis M3 INITIATIVE
The “Chinese Virus”: A Critical Discourse Analysis of U.S. Government Communication about COVID-19 and the Impact of the Communication on Chinese and Asian Americans in the U.S.
Dr. Theresa Catalano, Associate Professor, Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education, College of Education and Human Sciences, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Peiwen Wang, Phd Student, Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education, College of Education and Human Sciences, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Office of Research and Economic Development and Nebraska Tobacco Settlement Biomedical Research Development Funds
With support from: The Nebraska Center for Research on Children, Youth, Families, and Schools: https://cyfs.unl.edu/
The recent outbreak of COVID-19 beginning in December 2019 has resulted in numerous cases of Othering, racism, hate crimes, and violence against Chinese/Asian Americans in the United States. Because of the connection between media discourse and public opinion, it is believed that many of the negative actions described above stem from the way in which the government has communicated about the virus. The present study explores US government discourse regarding COVID-19 from a variety of news sources published later on Youtube. In order to gauge the way these discourses affect public opinion, we also examine reader comments connected to the media sources, including the reaction of Chinese/Chinese Americans to this discourse on Weibo (a Chinese version of Twitter). Using multimodal critical discourse analysis, we de-construct the visual and verbal discourse to reveal a variety of strategies used to communicate about the virus . Furthermore, we examine ideologies communicated through language and visual elements in the discourses and the way they shape unjust policies with the aim of combatting them. Finally, we un-pack counter-discourse used by viewers/consumers of the government discourse in order to show the impact it has on public opinion and its role in resisting the politicization of health issues such as COVID-19.
Interested in collaborating with the M3 Initiative?
Dr. Theresa Catalano