Att representera och representeras : samiska kvinnor i svensk och samisk press 1966-2006

Sammanfattning: This doctoral thesis examines how Sami women were represented in Swedish and Sami press during the years 1966, 1986 and 2006. Moreover, it problematises how the image of "the Sami woman" was constructed and represented in the press, in relation to the (re)production of normality and deviance, with special attention to the concepts of ethnicity and gender. The thesis adopts a theoretical framework informed by post-colonial theory and intersectional analysis, and the empirical study was approached through critical discourse analysis. Concepts such as orientalism, intersectionality, and strategic essentialism are central to the study, and the thesis includes discussions on ethics, reflexivity, knowledge and power as well as scrutinizing the hegemonic Western perspective in connection to Sami related research. As the main source materials, the Sami magazine Samefolket, and the Vilhelmina Sami press clippings archive were used. In addition to the articles, some of the women who appeared in the newspapers and magazines were interviewed, providing a valuable complement to the printed source materials. The study shows that Sami women were represented in a stereotypical manner in both Samefolket and in the Swedish press, with clear connections to the image of the Sami as it was formulated in the Swedish Sami policy during the 20th century. The balance between Sami and Swedish ethnicity was given increased attention over time, and women approached the theme by expressing themselves through various forms of art such as literature, film, photography or other extroverted activities. The importance of Sami women for the Sami ethno-political mobilisation appears to be more significant than has previously been noted, however women act from artistic platforms aswell as the traditional political arenas. As the dominant Swedish society, including members of the media, generally hold a low level of knowledge about Sami societies the discussion on Sami society, history and culture is kept at a rudimentary level. As a consequence, opportunities for in-depth discussions that represent the Sami from heterogeneous and alternative perspectives are limited.