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Master of Arts (M.A.)

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24, Vilification, Othering, Television, Fox, Neoconservative


This paper explores vilification in the popular counterterrorism show, Fox’s "24." A critical, in-depth analysis of three prominent antagonists from the show illustrates the different ways in which they are vilified. Each of the three characters is examined to understand which type of villain he or she embodies in "24," which of the show’s moral codes the villain affronts, and how he or she is punished or treated as a result. The analysis considers the broadcast of the show’s first six seasons in relation to neoconservative and Christian Right values that characterized the George W. Bush administration after 9/11. It finds that the show’s characterizations of all three villains—an Islamic extremist, a femme fatale, and a shirking bureaucrat—reinforce dominant xenophobic, patriarchal, and hypermasculine values, which underscored the Bush administration’s war on terror.


First Advisor

Stephen Olbrys Gencarella