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Multiculturalism and Social Work | San Francisco State University

Influences on the Mexican American youth gang discourse on local television news

Author: Tovares, Raul
Author Background:
Date 10-12/2000
Type Journal
Journal Title: Howard-Journal-of-Communications
Volume/Pages Vol 11(4): 229-246
Subject Matter Research, Mexican American, Gangs, Media, Social Environment
Abstract To examine how different persons, groups, and organizations attempt to influence television news stories about Mexican-American youth gangs, the author conducted field interviews with 6 police officers, 12 newsworkers, 9 community leaders, and young people, some of whom claimed to be members of gangs. Local TV news stories about gangs were also examined. Findings indicate that the production of these stories was the result of a social process and therefore was socially constructed in a context in which power was used to influence the discourse about Mexican-American youth gangs. Such discourse was related to the prevailing ideology and generally served to further the interests of those in power. Theoretical models that attempt to explain the representation of the news media's reporting of the Mexican-American youth gang are critiqued. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2000 APA, all rights reserved)