Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Martha Copp

Committee Members

Stefano Longo, Joseph O. Baker


This study examined patterns of framing in newspaper articles that mention gay teen suicide, gay bullying, and the "It Gets Better" campaign. A content analysis of randomly selected newspaper articles from 2009-2011 was performed. After presenting the frequency of content themes, emergent patterns are discussed. The most consistent theme--an evasive frame-- occurred with regard to homophobia, heterosexism, and meaningful solutions to anti-gay bullying. The day-to-day discrimination that LGBTQ people face was rarely addressed; instead, hot-button political topics such as same-sex marriage and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" were presented as signs of social progress. This research shows the importance of media framing, particularly the news media, in stories that report on gay bullying, suicide, and homophobia.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.