Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets

Schwark S (2017)
Frontiers in Psychology 8: 774.

Zeitschriftenaufsatz | Veröffentlicht | Englisch
OA 1.41 MB
Abstract / Bemerkung
To study visual representations of sexual violence, photographs accompanying German Internet news articles that appeared between January 2013 and March 2015 (N = 42) were subjected to thematic analysis. Two main themes, consisting of several sub-themes, emerged from the data. The first theme was “rape myths,” illustrating a stereotypical view of sexual violence. It consisted of three sub-themes: “beauty standards,” referring to the fact that all women in our sample fit western beauty standards, “physical violence,” as most images implied some form of physical violence, and finally “location,” suggesting that rape only happens in secluded outdoor areas. These findings suggest that the images from our sample perpetuate certain rape myths. The second theme was “portrayal of victimhood,” referring to the way victims of sexual violence were portrayed in photographs. The analysis of the sub-theme “passivity” showed that these portrayals fit a certain stereotype: the women were shown to be weak and helpless rather than individuals with agency and able to leave their status as a victim. Further sub-themes were “background,” “organization of space,” “camera perspective,” and “lighting.” We discuss these findings in relation to possibly reinforcing rape myths in society and as an issue in creating a biased perception of women who have experienced sexual violence.
Frontiers in Psychology
Open-Access-Publikationskosten wurden durch die Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft und die Universität Bielefeld gefördert.
Page URI


Schwark S. Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets. Frontiers in Psychology. 2017;8: 774.
Schwark, S. (2017). Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets. Frontiers in Psychology, 8, 774.
Schwark, Sandra. 2017. “Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets”. Frontiers in Psychology 8: 774.
Schwark, S. (2017). Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets. Frontiers in Psychology 8:774.
Schwark, S., 2017. Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets. Frontiers in Psychology, 8: 774.
S. Schwark, “Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets”, Frontiers in Psychology, vol. 8, 2017, : 774.
Schwark, S.: Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets. Frontiers in Psychology. 8, : 774 (2017).
Schwark, Sandra. “Visual representations of sexual violence in online news outlets”. Frontiers in Psychology 8 (2017): 774.
Alle Dateien verfügbar unter der/den folgenden Lizenz(en):
Creative Commons Namensnennung 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0):
Access Level
OA Open Access
Zuletzt Hochgeladen
MD5 Prüfsumme

56 References

Daten bereitgestellt von Europe PubMed Central.

“Rape myths acceptance: cognitive, affective and behavioral efects of beliefs that blame the victim and exonerate the perpetrator,” in
Bohner G., Eyssel F., Pina A., Siebler F., Viki G.., 2009
Using thematic analysis in psychology.
Braun V., Clarke V.., 2006
The use and opposition of rape myths in prime-time television dramas.
Brinson S.., 1992

Brownmiller S.., 1975

Cultural myths and supports for rape.
Burt MR., J Pers Soc Psychol 38(2), 1980
PMID: 7373511

Cuklanz L.., 1996

Cuklanz L.., 2000
Against the male flood: censorship, pornography, and equality.
Dworkin A.., 1985
The perceived impact of news photographs on public opinion formation.
Fahmy S., Wanta W.., 2007
Prevalence and effects of rape myths in print journalism: the Kobe Bryant case.
Franiuk R, Seefelt JL, Cepress SL, Vandello JA., Violence Against Women 14(3), 2008
PMID: 18292371
Prevalence of rape myths in headlines and their effects on attitudes toward rape.
Franiuk R., Seefelt J., Vandello J.., 2008
Objectification theory. Toward understanding women’s lived experience and mental health risks.
Fredrickson B., Roberts T.-A.., 1997
Blurring the lines: reinforcing rape myths in comic books.
Garland T., Branch K., Grimes M.., 2015
”Cry wolf”, cried the wolf: constructing the issue of false rape allegations in New Zealand media texts.
Gavey N., Gow V.., 2001
“Polytextual thematic analysis for visual data,” in
Gleeson K.., 2011

Gordon M., Riger S.., 1991
The influence of rape myth acceptance, sexual attitudes, and belief in a just world on attributions of responsibility in a date rape scenario.
Hammond E., Berry M., Rodriguez D.., 2011
Answering the call for a standard reliability measure for coding data.
Hayes A., Krippendorff K.., 2007
Syntax, semantics, and sexual violence: agency and the passive voice.
Henley N., Miller M., Beazley J.., 1995
“A “rape victim” by any other name: the effects of labels on individuals’ rape-related perceptions,” in
Hockett J., McGraw L., Saucier D.., 2014
Constructing victims: the erasure of women’s resistance to sexual assault.
Hollander J., Rodgers K.., 2014
Rethinking victimization: an interactional approach to victimology.
Holstein J., Miller G.., 1990
The “normal” victim: the effects of gender stereotypes on reactions to victims.
Howard J.., 1984
Attrition and conviction rates of sexual offences in Europe: definitions and criminal justice responses.
Jehle J.-M.., 2012
Accuracy in the judgment of in-group and out-group variability.
Judd CM, Ryan CS, Park B., J Pers Soc Psychol 61(3), 1991
PMID: 1941509

Kelly L., Lovett J., Regan L.., 2005
“Still killing us softly: advertising and the obsession with thinness,” in
Kilbourne J.., 1994
Imagery effects on the selective reading of internet newsmagazines.
Knobloch S., Hastall M., Zillmann D., Callison C.., 2003
Prospective lawyers’ rape stereotypes and schematic decision making about rape cases.
Krahé B., Temkin J., Bieneck S., Berger A.., 2008
Marital rape: Is the crime taken seriously without co-occurring physical abuse?
Langhinrichsen-Rohling J., Monson C.., 1998
Representation of women in news and photos: comparing content to perceptions.
Len-Ríos M., Rodgers S., Thorson E., Yoon D.., 2005

Lippmann W.., 1922
Rape myths. In Review.
Lonsway K., Fitzgerald L.., 1994
Objectification leads to depersonalization: the denial of mind and moral concern to objectified others.
Loughnan S., Haslam N., Murnane T., Vaes J., Reynolds C., Suitner C.., 2010

Lovett J., Kelly L.., 2009

Löw M.., 2016
Women and weight: gendered messages on magazine covers.
Malkin A., Wornian K., Chrisler J.., 1999
Management of acute adult sexual assault.
Mein JK, Palmer CM, Shand MC, Templeton DJ, Parekh V, Mobbs M, Haig K, Huffam SE, Young L., Med. J. Aust. 178(5), 2003
PMID: 12603187
Rape myth acceptance among Scottish and American students.
Muir G, Lonsway KA, Payne DL., J Soc Psychol 136(2), 1996
PMID: 8691832
“Visual pleasure and narrative cinema,” in
Mulvey L.., 1989
Monsters, playboys, virgins and whores: rape myths in the news media’s coverage of sexual violence.
O’Hara S.., 2012

Papendick M., Bohner G.., 2017
Image effects on selective exposure to computer-mediated news stories.
Sargent S.., 2007
“Consuming representation: a visual approach to consumer research,” in
Schroeder J.., 1998
Rape myths: in legal, theoretical, and everyday practice.
Schwendinger J., Schwendinger H.., 1974
The changing face of rape.
Soothill K.., 1991
“Volume overview,” in
Stangor C.., 2000
“Mental representations of social groups: advances in understanding stereotypes and stereotyping,” in
Stangor C., Lange J.., 1994
Women’s absence from news photos: the role of tabloid strategies at elite and non-elite newspapers.
Stanley J.., 2012
Perceived versus meta-analytic effect sizes: an assessment of the accuracy of gender stereotypes.
Swim J.., 1994
Life after rape: a chance to speak?
Thompson M.., 2000

Management of people who have been raped.
Wilken J, Welch J., BMJ 326(7387), 2003
PMID: 12609915
Effects on photographs in news-magazine reports on issue perception.
Zillmann D., Gibson R., Sargent S.., 1999

Markieren/ Markierung löschen
Markierte Publikationen

Open Data PUB

Web of Science

Dieser Datensatz im Web of Science®

PMID: 28559870
PubMed | Europe PMC

Suchen in

Google Scholar