Auster, Donald: "A Content Analysis of “Little Orphan Annie”." In: Social Problems 2.1 (1954), S. 26–33.
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|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Auster1954a
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Keywords: "Little Orphan Annie", Comic strip, Gray. Harold, Themes and motives, USA
Collection: Social Problems
Purpose: To determine the nature and extent to which a measurable social, political, and economic ideology exists in a nationally syndicated comic strip.
Procedure: Four areas were selected for study: (a) justice, (b) social class, (c) business success, and (d) political ideology. Hypotheses relative to the probable comic strip content in these areas were formulated. They were investigated by means of a content analysis of a representative sample of the comic strip taken from the universe of 25 years of its existence. A total of 1623 separate comic strip panels were analyzed far their theme and symbol content. Findings were checked by two independent judges. Agreement between the author and both judges ranged from a minimum of 75.5 percent in some areas to 91.8 percent in others.
Findings: Some of the hypotheses confirmed were: (a) American Justice—justice and the legal process are portrayed as unwieldly and corrupt, consequently it is necessary for extralegal substitutes to be employed; (b) Social Class—the working class is inadequately and unfavorably portrayed as compared with the middle class; (c) Business Success—the comic strip frequently mentions the Horatio Alger legend as the basis for success; however, actual success frequently results from luck rather than hard work. After analyzing the significance of these findings, the author points to the need for further study of the comic strips as important communicators of attitudes, values, and particular points of view.
(John Molstad, in: Educational Technology Research and Development 3 (1955) S. 159–160)
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