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St. Bonaventure University

Walker to present paper at annual AEJMC conference

Feb 24, 2023

Dr. Tara Walker, assistant professor of communication, will present her paper titled "Dammed, Diverted, Redirected: Stigma in Newspaper Articles About the Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs), 1995-2015" at the 48th Annual Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) Southeast Colloquium in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, in March.

The abstract for the paper reads: "Media coverage of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) drugs in the 1990s and 2000s is often credited with destigmatizing mental illnesses, especially depression and anxiety disorders. Media narratives in this time period popularized biomedical explanations of mental illness that are now commonplace, yet attitudes toward people with mental illness have not improved.

"To better understand persistent stigma, a content analysis studied newspaper coverage of SSRIs between 1995 and 2015. While the content analysis found little explicit stigma in the newspaper sample, topics discussed alongside SSRIs perpetuated two implicit forms of stigma: association with crime and hysteria around over-prescription."