n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Newspapers' portrayal of school violence in South Africa

Volume 22, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



This article reports on findings from a qualitative content analysis of newspaper articles on school violence that was published from June to September 2008, in South Africa. The presentation of the findings is divided into five categories. Identified themes are discussed and supported by direct quotations from the newspaper articles, as well as by references to the literature. The newspaper articles paint a grim picture of learners, educators and parents as perpetrators of school violence. Some of the victims - learners and educators - are described in a sensitive way, while others remain faceless. The analysis also sheds light on the pervasiveness of the problem. Individual, educational, as well as social causes of school violence were identified. The content analysis also revealed two approaches to violence prevention, namely punitive and security measures.

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