Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

MA Strategic Communication


Communication and the Arts


Ruth Tsuria, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Renee Robinson, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Gregory Stevens, M.A.T.

Committee Member

McKenna Schray, Ph.D.


politics, media representation, gender, political communication, spiral of silence, women in politics, race, sexism, textual analysis


Within the past fifty years, women and women of color have become active in the USA political sphere. However, there is still a visible gender and racial gap in politics that can be associated with uneven societal progression. This gap is documented through the media representation of women in politics. Analysis of the media coverage of Geraldine Ferraro, Sarah Palin, and Kamala Harris revealed four themes: Experience, Strength, Likeability, and Appearance. These themes are used to misrepresent women in politics and influence voter evaluations. This study analyzed how the layer of the evaluations is dependent upon not only gender but also race.