Media Portrayals of Trans and Gender Diverse People: A Comparative Analysis of News Headlines Across Europe. By: Bracco, Sofia E; Sczesny, Sabine and Gustafsson Sendén, Marie. 2024. Sex Roles. Vol. 90 Issue 4, p491-507.

Media representations of minorities (re)produce the societal context they are immersed in; thus, while media representations of trans and gender diverse (TGD) people have historically been negative and stigmatizing, different sociocultural contexts across countries can lead to considerable variations in these representations. The present study investigated how media representations of TGD people in news headlines varied across three European countries with different levels of legal protection and social acceptance of gender minorities: Sweden (high), the UK (medium), and Italy (low). In total, 830 headlines (Sweden = 300; UK = 300; Italy = 230) were coded for their valence (i.e., positive, neutral/mixed, negative), recurring social roles (i.e., criminals, victims, pioneers, professionals), gender aspects (i.e., target’s gender, misgendering), body aspects (i.e., medicalization, objectification), and focus (i.e., individual, group). We found that more gender-egalitarian societal contexts (Sweden, the UK) were associated with less negative and more neutral valence, less representations of TGD people as victims of discrimination and violence, more representations of gender
diverse people, less misgendering, and less objectification. Trans women were represented more often than trans men and gender diverse people across all countries. By comparing news media representations of TGD people across countries, this research helps to shed light on the correspondences between media representations of gender minorities and the different levels of legal protection and social acceptance they experience.