Publication Date

Fall 2010

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Political and Justice Studies

First Advisor

Daniel Cortese, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Donald Culverson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Jason Zingsheim, Ph. D.


The labor movement or union community of America has been in a steady decline for more than a decade. The 1950s saw the pinnacle of success with one-third of the U.S. workforce being unionized. Today only 8% of the private workforce is unionized. One way in which this decline may be perceived as more pronounced is through media alienation. According to journalists across the nation such as Philip M.Dine unions have been alienated by media and its type of union coverage. In this study, I analyze the way in which the New York Times portrays the labor movement during the Bush administration from the years 2001-2008. I utilize a content analysis of terminology and an in-depth sentence-by-sentence method. The findings suggest that political climates may have a pronounced effect on the print presses treatment of unions in its news articles. The study revolves upon issue coverage, general type of coverage per article, most unions represented, and quantity of coverage. The data is collected and presented per year, Bush term and complete terms of Bush presidency between 2001 and 2008. The data collected presents transformations within the union community similar to a media SWOTT analysis of unions for the years 2001-2008. These changes are important for their diverse effects upon th.e work community as a whole. My hypothesis that the press coverage of unions will be negative during the Bush Era (2001-2009) is proven to be incorrect. The press coverage results are abundantly positive for press in both forms of my content analysis. This leads to a great discussion on the future of similar studies and their effect on unions.