pISSN: 1598-3692

동북아 문화연구, Vol.64 (2020)
pp.41~68

Investigating political contexts and interests in news framing of Korea and Japan (2019) international conflict by English language media in East Asia

Okeke Job Izuchukwu

(Doctoral candidate in the dept of Mass Communication in Pukyong National University.)

Han, Hye-Kyoung

(Professor in the dept of Mass Communication in Pukyong National University.)

In July 2019, a trade rift broke out between South Korea and Japan, traced back to a long standing historical dispute over the treatment of Koreans during the Japanese colonial rule of the country. As the dispute bothers on history and national pride, national media in East Asia captured this feud from their different perspectives, which have wider implication for their immediate and wider audience around the world. This exploratory study aimed at investigating media framing of news of this recent conflict especially with recourse to operational context of the media organizations; whether operational context influenced news medias’ framing of the issues arising from the conflict. In this study, two broad contexts were considered: first, media in the primary context (the feuding countries); South Korea and Japan, and second, media in the secondary context (observant countries); China, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan etc. The study employed content analysis to determine framing of news reports selected from English language media organizations used in the study. Framing theory was utilized as the critical model towards understanding the issue under investigation. The result of our analysis showed that for South Korean government and media, historical issues of “slave labour” and “comfort women” etc. were dominant agendas they pushed. For Japan, their “trade restriction”, “1965 post war settlement” and its national “security measures” etc. were the main agendas they advanced in the media. For newsrooms in wider East Asia, apart from agendas of the feuding countries, regional concerns of security, peace and trade were also major concerns. Our analysis showed that nationalistic tendencies, newsroom ideals and loyalties did sometimes dictate what agenda is framed into news or left out, hence variation between South Korean and Japanese media outlets in the framing of the different agendas, as well as variation between Chinese media and the rest of democratic East Asia media.
  한국; 일본; 동아시아; 미디어 프레임; 한일갈등; 무역제재; 강제징용; 위안부; 화이트리스트;South Korea; Japan; East Asia; Media framing; Conflict; Trade restriction; Forced labour; Comfort women; Whitelist

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