Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)


Communication, Professional

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

John M. King

Committee Members

Kelly Price, Stephen W. Marshall


Negative media coverage can have a significant impact on the image of a country and can be detrimental to tourism-dependent areas. This study examined the newspaper coverage of Aruba 2 years before and after American tourist Natalee Holloway disappeared while vacationing with fellow classmates on a class trip. A content analysis of 400 major world newspapers was conducted. The study's purpose was to uncover the amount of publicity (both good and bad) from the incident as well as to unearth the overall tone towards Aruba.

The study revealed the Holloway incident did have a visible effect on the world news coverage of Aruba, although the scope of the effect seems relatively small. Overall, mentions of Aruba in major world newspapers became more prominent, more negative, and more frequent after the disappearance of Natalee Holloway.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.