#StopAsianHate: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Anti-Asian Racism During the COVID-19 Pandemic in Online Canadian News Media


  • Elaine Tran MacEwan University


In late January 2020, the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 virus was verified in Canada (Marchand-Senécal, Kozak, Mubareka, Salt, Gubbay, Eshaghi, Allen, Li, Bastien, Gilmour, Ozaldin & Leis, 2020). In early March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared the COVID-19 virus as a global pandemic at a media briefing (World Health Organization, 2020). The advent and evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic has created a culture of enhanced public health and safety measures. In addition, a dramatic increase in anti-Asian discrimination and racism due to the COVID-19 pandemic has also materialized in Canada (Statistics Canada, 2020). At an unprecedented time, the media has become a critical and powerful mechanism in order to remain informed about emerging events, including anti-Asian discrimination and racism in Canada. Therefore, the purpose of the study was to explore the differences and similarities between the discourses of anti-Asian racism during the COVID-19 pandemic in online Canadian news media. A critical discourse analysis of 30 news articles from Vancouver-based and national online news sources was conducted, which revealed several themes about the relationship between Asian Canadians, racism, and media amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Department: Honours Sociology

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Kalyani Thurairajah