Media Representation of States Involved in the South China Sea Dispute: International News in Context

Phyll Jhann E. Gildore, Christian Jay O. Syting


The media has discursively represented China, the Philippines, and the United States as states involved in territorial disputes in the South China Sea. These discursive representations ultimately pervade the media and public spheres. This study aimed to unravel these media representations by employing Halliday’s transitivity analysis and van Djik’s notion of ideological squares in analyzing news articles of the dispute from leading international news media. The analyses uncovered that China, the Philippines, and the United States are depicted to be actively involved in the dispute. The articles depict China’s assertive and aggressive measures in the disputed waters and against the United States. China is likewise portrayed to be favoring efforts to forward diplomatic resolutions in the region. The United States is depicted as aggressive towards China while maintaining a projection of power and intimidation in the region as the security guarantor. The Philippines, moreover, is portrayed to advance its claims in the context of forwarding aggressive policies, diplomatic protest, and negotiations and proposals for diplomatic resolutions, all while balancing relations with the US and China. These discursive representations demonstrate how the media has construed and constructed for the public the states involved in the territorial dispute.

Full Text:



World Journal of English Language
ISSN 1925-0703(Print)  ISSN 1925-0711(Online)

Copyright © Sciedu Press

To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the '' domain to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders. If you have any questions, please contact: