I graduated with a PhD in sociology from the University of New Hampshire, where my dissertation work examined how those perceived as foreign, Middle Eastern and/or Muslims are disproportionately labelled as terrorists in U.S. news media and the effect that this has on the public's perceptions of extremist violence.
In the future, I wish to address these issues in a cross-national perspective as my undergraduate studies were in both international relations and foreign languages. My research frequently overlaps with scholarship on immigration and nationality.
Additionally, I previously worked in the University of New Hampshire Affirmative Action and Equity Office, which oversees compliance with civil rights law and the university's response to bias-motivated offenses. During this time, I overhauled the office's incident reporting page, Title IX [sex discrimination] and Americans with Disability Act websites, and created an interactive sexual assault prevention training program for incoming students.
My research and teaching broadly address the causes and consequences of extremist violence, with a particular emphasis on the intersection of crime, race, media and politics. Several of my current and future projects deal with the use of language, narratives and imagery to portray threats and violent perpetrators, define boundaries around racial and ethnic groups, and advocate for or against various counterterrorism policies. Most of my research relies on quantitative methods; however, I enjoy collaborating in mixed-methods studies and have worked on a number of qualitative and mixed-methods projects as well.
Areas of Interest
- Terrorism and extremist violence
- Language and rhetoric
- Mass Media
- Race and Ethnicity
- Freis-Beattie, Reinmar. (2020) "Fear and Loathing in Post-9/11 America: Politics, News Media and Public Perceptions of Terrorism and Mass Violence." University of New Hampshire, Durham NH [Dissertation].
Works in Progress
- Freis-Beattie, Reinmar and Katherine Abbott. (2020) "Humanitarians Against Terror: Content Analysis of ISIS Narratives in Politics." Unpublished manuscript.