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The mediated discourse and voice of euthanasia: the Israeli media as a case study


Euthanasia is an important social and quality of life issue. However, it is highly controversial and thus continuously debated especially given its legitimacy and legality differ between countries. Little is known about the role media plays concerning this topic. To fill this gap, this study applies a mixed methods approach to a case study of Israeli media, including a quantitative content analysis of news articles (to measure the discourse of ‘civil participation’), a thematic analysis of news articles (to examine the ‘voice’) and a quantitative content analysis of Facebook comments (to measure ‘being heard’). Results indicate that while the media highly enables the media capability of ‘voice’ (both ‘voicing’ and ‘being heard’), it limits the media capability of ‘civil participation’ to a narrow array of discourse, hindering the social debate. These results reveal the role the media plays regarding euthanasia, integral to individuals’ quality of life through the realisation of their media capabilities, and in relation to the act of euthanasia itself.

  • social science
  • internet
  • journalism
  • end of life care
  • cultural studies

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