Discourse Analysis of Western Media’s Coverage of East Asia’s Anti-Pandemic Efforts


The achievements of East Asian countries in their fight against Covid-19 have attracted attention from Western media, governments and academia. Previous studies were mostly concerned with what topics Western media focused on and what attitudes they adopted when reporting a specific East Asian country, lacking systematic analysis of the image of East Asian countries. Techno-Orientalism is ideological thinking and discursive strategies commonly used by Western countries to construct the image of Asian countries. This study uses cultural discourse analysis to investigate how Western media, such as The New York Times, the BBC, portrayed three Eastern Asian countries in their Covid-19 reports and explores how Western media applied techno-Orientalism to the image of East Asian countries during the pandemic. The study finds that when reporting concrete facts, Western media acknowledged the effectiveness of the anti-pandemic measures taken by Eastern Asian countries and the social cohesion people in such countries exhibited. However, ideologically, their reports of Western centrism dismissed the success of Asian countries as Confucian techniques.

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Publication Date

31 January 2022

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European Publisher



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1st Edition




Communication, Media, Disruptive Era, Digital Era, Media Technology 

Cite this article as:

Deng, T. (2022). Discourse Analysis of Western Media’s Coverage of East Asia’s Anti-Pandemic Efforts. In J. A. Wahab, H. Mustafa, & N. Ismail (Eds.), Rethinking Communication and Media Studies in the Disruptive Era, vol 123. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 445-455). European Publisher. https://doi.org/10.15405/epsbs.2022.01.02.37