Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Honors Thesis


Political Science

First Advisor

Gregory Shufeldt


Indiana’s voter identification law is controversial. Supporters argue that the law is necessary to protect the integrity of elections. Its critics argue that the law suppresses the votes of racial minorities and other historically marginalized and oppressed groups. The ensuing legal battle culminated in the U.S. Supreme Court case Crawford v. Marion County Election Bd. This thesis investigates this law’s oppressive intent by utilizing qualitative, interpretive content analysis. The arguments within the respondents’ case briefs are interpreted and evaluated through the context in which the law was introduced and enacted and Iris Marion Young’s five faces of oppression: exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, cultural imperialism, and violence. While Young’s faces focus on experiences, this paper employs them to find language that supports or embraces those experiences. This study identifies four of the five faces in these case briefs – violence was not found. Since these faces were found in several arguments, this thesis concludes that there was oppressive intent in proponents’ arguments for Indiana’s voter identification law.