The role of the media in the social construction of risk: the Adrianópolis case in Ribeira valley

This article analyzes the influence of the media on the social construction of risk, from the different perceptions and attitudes of the residents of a community exposed to lead poisoning. The study used a combination of documental analysis and field research to build up an understanding of the role the media had taken in the social amplification of risk in this particular case and to observe how the responses to a situation of risk interacted with psychological, social, institutional and cultural processes. Aside from the direct influence of the media, this case study reveals the importance of other factors in molding the community's risk perceptions, such as a mistrust of institutions and politicians, the relationship between risk and work activities and cultural and social values.

media; risk; lead poisoning; Adrianópolis (PR); Brazil

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