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News media usually show immigrants as dangerous criminals

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Political science and government alumna Emily Farris ’06 has written an article in The Washington Post about how immigrants are depicted in the news media. The article is an offshoot of a study she and coauthor Heather Silber Mohamed conducted involving three major news magazines. They found that the magazines reinforce the narrative of a “Latino threat,” depicting immigrants as criminals unable or unwilling to integrate into the U.S. In recent weeks, however, the emphasis on showing children in the news media has offered a sympathetic portrayal of immigrant families that may be less common, according to the researchers’ data.

Emily M. Farris is an assistant professor of political science and comparative race and ethnic studies at Texas Christian University, focusing on U.S. local politics and racial and ethnic politics.

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