The Media Effect on stereotyping of Muslims Post 9/11

Thomas M. Erichsen, Sofie C. Gregersen-Diaz, Mathias Foged, Mathies Nelbom, Frederik Hald & Mathias Preisler

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


The concept of stereotyping is present all around us, we all categorize and judge people we do not know and have not spoken to, forming an impression that does not run parallel to the actual image. We might deem a person to be stupid, lazy and ignorant, or intelligent, hardworking and sophisticated, based on our subjective understanding of the world and past experiences with other people that just have a few or maybe only one similar trait. They may be from the same city, wear the same clothes or share the same religion. Although these categorizations exist as a natural part of our consciousness they are not immune to external influence, and so examining these influences can provide a better understanding of how these prejudices develop. The modern world has in the mass media received a relatively young, but already significantly influential social agent. Mass media is present in almost every part of our everyday life. Television, newspapers and radio are viewed, read and listened to, by a majority of the population in modern societies. This project aims to examine the degree to which this entity is capable of transforming our perception of the world around us, in this case, regarding how stereotypes amongst a country’s population can be the negative consequence of the representation of social reality we receive by the media. After 9/11, Muslims and their religion became the topic of discussion on a global level, and looking at the event they became linked with, this discussion arguably had a negative undertone, as the radical Islamic group of Al-Qaeda took responsibility for the attack shortly after. But even though the approximately 1.8 billion Muslims who inhabits the world were not simultaneously present aboard the planes that hit the World Trade Center, a general distrust and resentment arose within the victimized country that led to hate crimes, targeting of Muslims and a heated debate of cultures, ideologies, religions and nations that culminated in The War on Terror. The media had the responsibility of presenting to the American population what was happening, both during and after the attack, and terrorism, Islam and war became themes for millions of Americans in their everyday lives in the post 9/11 era. The goal of this paper is to shed light on how the media framed the occurring events, and how their representation of the Islamic faith and those committed to it, had an effect on the perception of the rest of the population in the US.

UddannelserBasis - International Samfundsvidenskabelig Bacheloruddannelse, (Bachelor uddannelse) Basis
Udgivelsesdato18 dec. 2013


  • Muslims
  • Islam
  • Media
  • Stereotyping
  • 9/11