Why don’t we hear about the low number of coronavirus deaths in Central Europe?

Culik, J. and Solic, M. (2020) Why don’t we hear about the low number of coronavirus deaths in Central Europe? Conversation, 26 Jun.

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Publisher's URL: https://theconversation.com/why-dont-we-hear-about-the-low-number-of-coronavirus-deaths-in-central-europe-141148

Abstract

This article, published on 26 June in The Conversation, points out the existing bias in English language media when it comes to reporting COVID-19 success stories. Dr Mirna Solic and Dr Jan Culik of School of Modern Languages and Cultures at the University of Glasgow discuss why such stories from Central European countries are under reported in English language media, and preference is given to other countries, which report similar, if not the same results in curbing the pandemic, such as New Zealand. As the main reason the authors stress the role of stereotypes about the history of Central Europe, highlighting collective suffering, authoritarianism, and permanent hardship as the dominant ones. In the case of Croatia, the 1990s War of Independence is often used by the media in order to explain the country’s approach to the pandemic. Parallels are also drawn between Central European responses to the pandemic and the alleged xenophobic attitudes in the region. The authors suggest that the use of stereotypes in reporting is detrimental as it diverts focus from recognising the role of public health systems in Central Europe in a successful response to the pandemic.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:COVID-19, novel coronavirus, English speaking media, Central Europe, media stereotyping, Croatia, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Poland.
Status:Published
Refereed:No
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Solic, Dr Mirna and Culik, Dr Jan
Authors: Culik, J., and Solic, M.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Modern Languages and Cultures > Slavonic Studies
Journal Name:Conversation
Publisher:The Conversation
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 The Authors
First Published:First published in The Conversation 26 June 2020
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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