This project explores how discourses of heterofemininity, whiteness, class-passing and U.S. nation-building constructed news media narratives about four pregnant women (Laci Peterson, Lori Hacking, Susan Torres and Britney Spears). To answer the research questions of why these women and why now, I employ two analytics that I call the presence of absence and the absence of presence. The presence of absence refers to my attempt to interrogate the normative, and therefore invisible, nature of heterofemininity, whiteness and class-passing in the news media narratives about Peterson, Hacking, Torres and Spears. The absence of presence refers to the importance of contextualizing these narratives within a post-2001 "moment" in which racialized Others were troubling for, and troubled the idea of, the American nation.To complete my study, I used Foucauldian discourse theory analysis of three print newspapers (The New York Times, The Washington Post and USA Today) and three televisual news programs (Larry King Live, Anderson Cooper 360° and Dateline). These texts reached a national audience and therefore allowed me to interrogate how the U.S. nation is constructed according to gender, racialization and class-specific discourses.