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The European Journal of Communication Research

Ed. by Averbeck-Lietz, Stefanie / d'Haenens, Leen

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Volume 44, Issue 4


The effects of metaphorical frames on attitudes: The Euro crisis as war or disease?

Willem Joris / Leen d’Haenens / Baldwin Van Gorp
Published Online: 2019-10-10 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2018-2021


Previous research has identified the frames and metaphors used in the reporting on the Euro crisis. War and disease turned out to be the two most frequently used metaphorical frames. Since coverage of the current financial crisis may have a tangible effect on public opinion, research into the effects of metaphorical frames on attitudes is needed. By employing two survey experiments, a student sample (N = 259) and a nonstudent sample (N = 507), this article traces the effects of both metaphorical frames. Our results show that individuals take over the metaphorical frame elements in their evaluation of the Euro crisis. Participants in the war conditions significantly more often referred to war when answering the open questions. Alternatively, when the Euro crisis was framed as a disease, participants were more likely to use words and sentences containing disease frame elements.

Keywords: Framing effects; metaphor; framing; experiments; Euro crisis


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About the article

Published Online: 2019-10-10

Published in Print: 2019-11-26

Citation Information: Communications, Volume 44, Issue 4, Pages 447–468, ISSN (Online) 1613-4087, ISSN (Print) 0341-2059, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/commun-2018-2021.

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