The Candidate as Archetype in the TV News Reports Of the 2010 Philippine Presidential Election

Sarmenta Jr., S.R. (2011). The candidate as archetype in the TV news reports of the 2010 Philippine presidential election. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation. University of the Philippines. College of Mass Communication

Media’s role in the electoral process is being increasingly scrutinized for its capability to offer citizens sufficient information on the qualifications and issue stands of political candidates. In so doing, the media presents the electorate the candidate as an actor in the narrative from which archetypes emerge. Given that any discourse as Foucault points out is a vessel of power, the voter is presented with a powerful image of the candidate that can affect electoral choices.

Using a proposed framework based on Richardson’s (2007) Critical Discourse Analysis for newspapers, 278 presidential candidate reports out of 644 election-related accounts in the news programs TV Patrol and 24 Oras from January to May 2010, were analyzed. News reports are often referred to as “stories” and the analysis sought to spot the character portrayals and the qualities that surfaced. These were then matched with familiar archetype qualities that appear in the news identified by Lule (2005) and the religious myths embedded in the Tagalog Pasyon of 1814. Three of the Lule archetypes with one deviation - The Victim, The Trickster and The Returning Hero; one Lule archetype, The Good Mother, overlapped with The Good Son of the Pasyon; two archetypes from the Pasyon -God, the Father and Jesus Christ, The Liberator; and two archetypes – The Survey Leader and the Underdogs –were manifested as well.

KEY WORDS: Political communication, elections, archetype

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