Women, men, and five Olympic rings: An examination of Chinese Central Television’s broadcast of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics

Qingru Xu, Andrew Billings, Hua Wang, Rui Jin, Sitong Guo, Mingming Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study conducts a content analysis on Chinese Central Television’s broadcasting of figure skating, short track speed skating, and freestyle skiing—the three most popular winter sports in the People’s Republic of China—at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics from the perspective of biological sex. A full examination of 100% (over 37 h) of Chinese Central Television’s broadcast coverage was analyzed in terms of clock-time, name-mentions, and descriptors. In each sport examined, female athletes received less clock-time and fewer name-mentions compared to their male counterparts. However, in the analysis of 7765 descriptors, relatively few significant differences between depictions of male and female athletes were uncovered, potentially explained by the Communist legacy of erasing women’s feminine characteristics and the relatively equal number of male and female commentators in Chinese Central Television’s sports newsrooms. Also, compared to many Western countries, male figure skaters in the People’s Republic of China received more clock-time and name-mentions, possibly attributed to cultural differences in defining ideal masculinity across East Asia and the West.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)747-766
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Review for the Sociology of Sport
Volume55
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2019.

Keywords

  • Olympics
  • People’s Republic of China
  • biological sex
  • content analysis
  • sports media
  • winter sports

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

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