Media, Public Spheres and Gender

An understanding of the category of gender as an important structural element of any communication is the central common view of the members of the “Media, Public Spheres and Gender” division. In this way, media and communication-based gender research claims to engage with all fields of communication studies as critical research.

The “Media, Public Spheres and Gender” division started its work officially in 1990 as the “Working Group for Women’s Studies”. The group was founded by feminist scholars in media and communication studies who had worked on gender in media and public spheres years before. Crucial scientific works on the representation of women in the media, on the role of women in journalism or in PR, on the specific modes of women’s reception emerged during this period.

Women’s studies, understood as feminist research, is normatively grounded. The aim of the group is to contribute to the change of gender structures in and through/by media and thus to gender equality and justice in societies.

The theoretical development from women’s studies to gender studies is visible in the current name of the “Media, Public Spheres and Gender” division. Whether in media production, media texts and representation or audience reception research – in all fields, the question arises of the immanent relevance of the category of gender in the construction of mediated realities.

Chair:  Prof. Dr. Elke Grittmann (
Vice Chair:  Mag. Dr. Ricarda Drüeke (