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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Mission Invisible

Race, Religion, and News at the Dawn of the 9/11 Era

Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Mission Invisible

Race, Religion, and News at the Dawn of the 9/11 Era

For many Canadians, the attacks of 9/11 produced feelings of insecurity, vulnerability, and suspicion of “Muslims.” How did these negative attitudes come about? Many point to the complicity of the news media in reproducing racist images of Muslim minorities. Mission Invisible chronicles varying racialized constructions of Muslim communities in the news during the most significant stage of reportage: the initial weeks when the events, issues, and primary actors of 9/11 were all first framed by journalists. By unravelling the discourse and rhetoric of news coverage in Canada at the dawn of the 9/11 era, this book not only uncovers racist representations of Muslim communities but also reveals the discursive processes that rendered this racism invisible.

320 pages

Table of Contents


Introduction: Mission Visible?


Why 9/11 and Canada?

Why Racism?

Why Muslims?

Why The Gazette?


1 Mission Recognition

The Event

The Medium

The Moment

The Message

The Method

The Procedure

2 Mission Ambition

Impact of the Media

Journalists’ Agendas

3 Mission Decision

The Rhetoric of Racism

The Discourse of Racism

The Discourse of Anti-Racism

4 Mission Oppression

The Discourses of Grief

The Discourses of Justification for War

The Discourses of Readying for War

The Discourses of Orientalism

5 Mission Perception

Shock and Disbelief




Personal Safety


Racial Profiling

Fear and Moral Panic


Impact on Quebecers

6 Mission Opposition

Descriptive Analysis of Muslims’ Voices

Discursive Themes of Muslims’ Voices

The Discourse of the “Good” Muslim

7 Mission Position

Writings on Leaders’ Voices

Writings on White Victims’ Voices

Writings on Muslims’ Voices

8 Mission Envision

Representations of Leaders’ Voices

Representations of White Victims’ Voices

Representations of Muslims’ Voices

9 Mission Completion

The Journalistic Process in Context

Newsgathering Practices

The Effects of the Messages

The Anti-Terrorism Act

Racial Profiling

10 Mission Condition

The Gazette: Success or Failure?

White Readership

Muslim Readership

Journalistic Leadership


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