Sep
01
1992

Conventional Wisdom

How the Press Rewrites Democratic Party History Every Four Years

Coverage of the 1992 Democratic National Convention often drew sharp contrasts with earlier Democratic conventions--particularly 1984 and 1988. A look back at the coverage of those conventions, however, shows that they were covered in almost exactly the same terms. Like 1992, both '84 and '88 were treated as landmarks, a new start for a party whose old ways had led to defeat. The New York Times (7/22/84) reported it was "with justification" that Mondale aides called the '84 convention "the most successful since 1964." According to a Chicago Tribune editorial (7/24/88), "The Democratic Party of 1988 is more unified, more […]

Sep
01
1992

Women Candidates in '92 Election Coverage

The year 1988, the press reported, would be a breakthrough year for women in politics. But in the end, only two additional women were elected to the House of Representatives, none to the Senate. In 1990, we were again told we were seeing the "Year of the Woman." But although 70 women won major party nominations that year, the numbers in Congress did not change. This time, the experts say, they're serious: 1992 is really and truly the "Year of the Woman" in American politics. The repeated recourse to the "Year of the Woman" tag is some indication of the […]