Ethics, Theories, and Ideologies


Agenda-Setting: The New York Times covered women's suffrage almost daily for a few years. They were validating the importance of the current event. 

Gatekeeping: Although the NYT covered the events surrounding the suffrage movement, they didn't always make all information public. In regard to the hunger strikes, the NYT acknowledged that force-feeding was happening, but it was majorly downplayed.

Cultivation: The suffragists used cultivation in their White House picketing tactic. They made sure their cause was seen by the President and the general public on a daily basis.The New York Times potentially used cultivation as well by constantly publishing stories about suffrage. This is especially admirable because it would've been easy to underplay because of World War I.

Framing: In the movie, Alice Paul was framed very positively; almost glorified. Concurrently, all men were vilified. Also, the New York Times framed Carrie Chapman Catt very positively. All middle- and upper-class white women were framed positively.


White Privilege: In the suffragist parade, Alice Paul told Ida Wells Barnett she had to march in the back of the procession. Alice Paul believed that they would have more of a chance of success if they didn't involve racial conflicts; to Alice Paul, women's suffrage was just white women's suffrage. This reinforces the idea of white privilege.

Patriarchy: This is the most prominent ideology in the film. The conflict of women's suffrage was created by the idea of male dominance. They had to lobby the male legislators and the male President for their approval of an amendment. The movie reinforces this patriarchy throughout the movie as the women are working to get the right to vote. By the end of the movie, the patriarchy is finally challenged.

Democracy: This is the reason why women were finally given the right to vote. They used it as one of their main arguments to fight for suffrage and accused President Wilson of violating democracy.


"Make certain that [news content] do[es] not misrepresent. They should not oversimplify or highlight incidents out of context." The New York Times did not uphold this particular aspect of the Code of Ethics. They oversimplified events, especially in regard to prison conditions and hunger strikes.

"Tell the story of the diversity and magnitude of the human experience..." The movie makes the point that the women that were supporting suffrage didn't necessarily support suffrage for colored women. It makes it very clear that they were racist.

"Give voice to the voiceless." As soon as prisoners were released from jail, they went to the media as an outlet to expose their unfair treatment and the horrible conditions of prison. Because the New York Times upheld this ethic, the issue raised concern among the public who then notified the President and pressured him to support suffrage.