Orange Is the New Black is a Netflix television series that began in 2013. The series focuses on the lives of inmates in a fictional women's prison. Television series about prison have focused primarily on men in prison. This thesis will expand upon previous research on representation of minorities in television using a feminist media analysis to examine the first season of the series. I will explore how race, gender, and sexuality are represented within the series. I examine the representations of four characters during the first season. I chose these four characters because they represented different racial groups, sexualities, and gender expressions. I argue that while the series gives visibility to many minority women, the show continues to use harmful stereotypes that perpetuate negative cultural ideologies about minorities.


Laura Harrison

First Committee Member

Barbara Carson

Second Committee Member

Jessica Flatequal

Date of Degree




Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Gender and Women's Studies


Social and Behavioral Sciences

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License



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