This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Comments on Covering Up: International Discourse on the Burkini Ban




Van Yahres, Lauren

Type of Degree

Master's Thesis


Communication and Journalism


Following the Bastille Day terrorist attack in Nice, France, the Riviera town of Cannes banned Muslim full-coverage swimwear known as the burkini in July 2016. Similar to a wetsuit, a burkini is a conservative swimsuit designed for Muslim women that covers all skin except for the face, hands, and feet. This study analyzed article content and comment sections of five news media outlets, Al Jazeera, The Guardian, Russia Today (RT), The Times of India, and The Washington Post, for frames about the burkini ban. The news articles framed the burkini ban using colonialism, consumerist, feminist, and French Nationalist frames. Different frames emerged among the comment sections. These frames were cultural conflict, Islamophobia, sexist, and satire. There were limited similarities among the article and commenter frames, which is contrary to previous research that suggests media influence audience frames.