The article reveals how particular mass-mediated journalistic discourses of white middle-class “respectability” are normalized and rendered invisible by dominant media institutions. It explores how Canadian mainstream journalism not only interprets reality in ways that reflect reactionary ideologies and prevailing views of “common sense,” but is responsible for constructing that reality. This reality also reflects how Canadian productions of gendered racial citizenship and white supremacy are currently being reconstituted and revivified by the neoliberal “anti-state state,” and are fueling the discursive and physical violence that drives “necropolitics.” The article engages in a frame analysis of news coverage of two high-profile criminal cases that are cited as the cause célèbre legitimizing the passage of The Citizen’s Arrest and Self-defence Act, and engages with the interventions of critical race feminism and postcolonial theory, which are attentive to how gender and race thinking are co-imbricated in necropolitical forms of power within white settler societies. Since the dualist “construct of respectability and degeneracy” determines who possesses the rightful claim to citizenship and who is excluded from belonging to the nation, it remains important in uncovering interlocking structures of domination.


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pp. 1-26
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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