Reifying Race through the Media: The Case of the Central Park Jogger Story
Natalie Byfield, St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Department of Sociology & Anthropology
Abstract: This paper studies the media’s role in the reification of race in the social structure. The examination is conducted through a content analysis of newspaper coverage of the Central Park Jogger Story (CPJS). This is a 1989 incident in which a white, female investment banker jogging through New York City’s Central Park was raped and a group of six Black and Latino teenage boys were falsely charged and convicted, with some serving as many as 13 years in prison.