ISSN: 1550-7521

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Xenophobia in South Africa: An Insight into the Media Representation and Textual Analysis


This paper examines print media coverage of xenophobicrelated behaviours and its possibility to incite xenophobic violence in South Africa considering the fact that the press has had accusations of publishing unbalanced and inconsistent stories about xenophobic-related violence. The method adopted was textual analysis of the selected South African newspapers’ headlines. Thus, this paper has made use of headlines from the Daily Dispatch, The Citizen, Sunday Times, Business Daily, and Independent Online news (IOL), between the period of May 2008 to August 2018. Interestingly, most of the selected newspapers in this paper have published vastly during this period, and they have been accused of misrepresentation, biasness, unbalanced reportage mostly on xenophobic-related violence. The findings of this paper revealed that these headlines are capable to putting readers on the edge and thus incite xenophobic violence across the country. In an attempt to discourage xenophobic behaviours, this paper has therefore recommended peace journalism and Ubuntu journalism as alternative models for reporting xenophobic violence and conflict.

Quatro Mgogo

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