Before and After the 2017 Gulf Crisis: Peace, Propaganda, and Violence Frames in Al-Jazeera’s Coverage of Bahrain’s Uprising

Zainab Abdul-Nabi


This study explores how the fluctuations of Qatari-Bahraini ties from 2011 to 2021 have influenced Al-Jazeera’s legitimization of the Bahraini regime. It also measures the extent to which Al-Jazeera Arabic (AJA) and Al-Jazeera English (AJE) included Galtung’s typology of violence (ToV) and peace journalism model (PJM) in their coverage of Bahrain’s 2011 uprising. A total of 424 articles were analyzed from both channels. The results found that the regime’s direct violence dominated the coverage, whereas its structural and cultural violence received less attention, particularly by AJA. In addition, the number of articles framing the regime’s propaganda as facts dropped across both channels following the 2017 Gulf crisis. During the same period, delegitimizing frames of the regime increased in articles from AJA and AJE. The study concludes that the deterioration of Qatari-Bahraini relations after the 2017 crisis made Al-Jazeera’s coverage more critical of the Bahraini regime but not necessarily more peace journalism oriented.


peace journalism, typology of violence, 2017 Gulf Crisis, Bahrain Uprising, Al-Jazeera, framing theory, Qatar foreign policy, propaganda

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