Logo for Climate Social Science Network (CSSN)

News and Research

CSSN Scholar Publications

“Constructing the Millennial “Other” in United States Press Coverage of the Green New Deal”

October 6, 2020

Author(s): Hanna E. Morris


Through a critical discourse analysis, this study finds that both The New York Times and Wall Street Journal portray the Green New Deal as a dangerous policy proposed by a cohort of extremist Millennial “Others.” Agonistic media pluralism is stunted. Instead, a uniform and moderate perspective guides reporting, analyses, and commentary. In place of a detailed and robust discussion of the Green New Deal through a multitude of different perspectives, the discursive strategies of “positioning,” “de/legitimization,” and “naturalization” cast supporters of the policy as a dangerous threat within an already rattled, post-2016 United States political landscape. Through this image of threat, the market-based carbon tax is elevated as the best and only way forward. Ultimately, this study finds that the construction of a threatening Millennial “Other” is leveraged to discredit the viability of the Green New Deal and to suppress a diversity of political perspectives.