Social determinants of autism spectrum disorder in the print media news: A qualitative framing analysis of coverage in national newspapers in Turkey


YILMAZ ALTUNTAŞ E. , Doganyigit S. O.

COGENT SOCIAL SCIENCES, vol.7, no.1, 2021 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 7 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/23311886.2021.1947607
  • Title of Journal : COGENT SOCIAL SCIENCES

Abstract

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a prevalent condition that affects the lives of individuals around the world. Despite its medical and social significance, little research has been done on the living conditions of individuals diagnosed with autism in Turkey, the challenges that they and their families experience in social life. To fill this gap in the literature, this study examines how the mainstream Turkish print media cover and frame autism-related stories, through a qualitative framing analysis of 541 news reports published in widely circulated national newspapers in Turkey. Key findings include that autism is positively represented in the news media as a social fact by the support of the society and non-governmental organizations. In terms of source frame, journalists constitute the most frequently cited source in the news reports under review. We have noted that the autism-related news stories often feature nutrition and genetic/congenital factors as causes of autism. This study highlights the impact that media representations of autism have on people's understanding of this disorder and its social implications.