Media advisory: KU experts can discuss how women candidates face additional stereotypes during midterm elections

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Media advisory

Contact: Jon Niccum, KU News Service, 785-864-7633, [email protected]; Mike Krings, KU News Service, 785-864-8860, [email protected], @MikeKrings
KU experts can discuss how women candidates face additional stereotypes during November midterm elections
LAWRENCE — As the 2022 midterm elections draw near, candidates are diligently working to craft their public image, and media portrayals play a large part in how they are perceived by voters. For women candidates, media framing can be especially fraught.
Teri Finneman, associate professor of journalism & mass communications at the University of Kansas, has researched mass media portrayals of women in politics and is available to speak with media on the topic. Finneman can discuss mass media, political portrayals, challenges women in politics face, portrayals of first ladies throughout U.S. history and related topics.
“Stereotypes of women in politics continue to be a significant problem that have repercussions for democracy and representative government,” Finneman said.
Finneman has written extensively on coverage of women in politics, the women’s suffrage movement and is host of the podcast “Journalism History.” She has also actively documented history of journalism in rural America and launched a project to test alternative business models for weekly newspapers.

Ahreum Maeng, associate professor of marketing at KU, is available to discuss why conservative voters may not fully support women candidates.

Her article titled “The Face of Political Beliefs: Why Gender Matters for Electability” reveals how American conservatives and liberals read dominance signals differently when exposed to facial cues from men or women. Conservatives show stronger bias against female faces because they are less likely to elect women candidates due to their association with lower dominance.
“Facial information forms that first impression within less than a second. Other information may override it. But it may not,” said Maeng, whose expertise focuses on consumer behavior.
Midam Kim, lecturer and research associate at the School of Business, is available to discuss how the effect of the pitch quality of leaders’ voices may rest entirely on what gender they are.

Her research paper titled “Think Leader, Think Deep Voice? CEO Voice Pitch and Gender” examines how low voice pitch is known to be an auditory cue for leader dominance and thus preferred by followers in various fields, mostly with male leader voices. But Kim’s research argues that gender moderates this relationship, with the pitch effect becoming weaker when leaders are women.
“People tend to expect dominant leadership from men and communal leadership from women,” Kim said.
Having earned a doctorate in linguistics, Kim is an expert in bridging linguistics and management.
To schedule an interview with Finneman, contact Mike Krings at 785-864-8860, [email protected] or @MikeKrings.

To schedule an interview with Maeng or Kim, contact Jon Niccum at 785-864-7633 or [email protected]



KU News Service
1450 Jayhawk Blvd.
Lawrence KS 66045
Phone: 785-864-3256
Fax: 785-864-3339
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Erinn Barcomb-Peterson, director of news and media relations, [email protected]

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