Making war and peace with emotion: examining the Iraq and Iran cases via presidential speech and media coverage
Wu, H. Denis
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Citation (published version)Katherine Seaton, H Denis Wu. "Making war and peace with emotion: Examining the Iraq and Iran cases via presidential speech and media coverage." International Political Science Review, pp. 019251212098249 - 019251212098249. https://doi.org/10.1177/0192512120982498
This study investigates emotions conveyed in US presidential speeches and media coverage regarding the Iraq War and the Iran nuclear deal during 2003 and 2015. The researchers gathered and examined news stories about the two policies, all official speeches delivered by George W Bush and Barack Obama, and opinion polls conducted during the respective six-month period in those two years. Nine discrete emotions were coded to capture the valence and volume in the speeches and news media content. The study finds that emotions appear more frequently in the Iraq discourse than in the Iran counterpart. President Bush used more negative emotions while President Obama employed more positive emotions. Emotion in the media coverage is constant and stable across the two policy periods; yet negative emotions are more prevalent than positive counterparts in the media despite distinct foreign policies. The study also examines public opinion trends toward the two policies for inferring potential linkage. This article contributes to the conceptual nexus among emotional persuasion, journalism pattern, and foreign policy-making process.