Gender, Race, and Power: The Gendered Racialization of Puerto Ricans inTV News Coverage of Hurricane Maria

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


ucilla Vargas’ ground-breaking work on the production of local news demonstrated how journalistic practices contribute to the racialization and genderization of the Latina/Latino community. The preponderance of human-interest stories focused on family, children, and domestic culture, in a local news context of invisibility, reinforced the construction of Latinas and Latinos as powerless actors concerned more with domesticity than with political life.

This chapter revisits Vargas’ using a qualitative analysis of TV and digital English-language news of the impact of Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico and its citizens. The analysis explores the following questions: What are the dominant news images and narratives about Puerto Ricans? What journalistic practices shape news narratives of Puerto Ricans on the island? How do news images and narratives challenge or reinforce already existing racialized and gendered images and narratives about US Latinas/Latinos and Puerto Rican communities? In exploring these questions, the analysis extends Vargas’ work to national television and digital news and advances critical feminist journalism approaches for studying the social and political marginalization of US minority groups in the news.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationJournalism, Gender and Power
PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
Number of pages16
StatePublished - Feb 12 2019


  • Hurricane Maria, Puerto Ricans, Journalism Studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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