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Unformatted text preview: 1.29.08 Questions To Ask:-Context and conditions for the rise of American Journalism?-Sponsorship? Context? Format? Audience?-Role in American colonial culture? 1690-1740 (time period well talk about today)-Characterized by experimentation Context 1: British Colonization-1607Jamestown, Virginia First city/settlement-By 1732there were 13 colonies British settling first in New England territory, then Chesapeake Bay, and, gradu- ally, further south Context 2: 13 Colonies-There was a connection between who these newcomers/settlers were, why they were coming to the new land, and newspaper content (a lot had to do with religion and eco- nomy Settling New England Settling the middle colonies Settling the southern colonies-Colonial Economy: Primarily agricultural economy Trade as an important source Ties with Britain-Population: Increasing Providing more readership 9 out of 10 lived on farms = not potential readers o The other 10% were merchants, clerks, lawyers, etc. = potential readership-Education and Literacy: By 1740 , about 100% of males could read and write, and 90% of women could do so The high literacy rate helped foster/encourage the newspaper industry-Geographic Distance of Newspapers: Boston as the center o High population and political importance compared to other colonies o High density of printersavailable technology Printers were mainly used for printing bibles Format:-The first newspapers: 1690: Public Occurrences (Benjamin Harris) 1704: The Boston Newsletter (John Campbell) 1719: The Boston Gazette (William Brooker) 1721: The New England Courant (James Franklin) 1729: Pennsylvania Gazette (Ben Franklin) 1731: South Carolina Gazette (Thomas Whitemarsh) 1734: New York Weekly Journal (John Peterzenger) *Note that there were 15 years between the first two newspapers15 years of nothing *Boston and New England are at the center, which is also evident by above list *First newspapers were all written by white males Many were assisted by female writers (daughters, sisters, wives, etc.), but this wasnt creditedIt was wrong at the time Sponsorship:-Postmaster (not a printer, but the master/owner of the post office) EX: John Campbell-Literary club EX: New England Courant-Political faction EX: NY Weekly Journal (really the only true example) *Printers gradually replaced all of the other sponsorships After 1730s 90% of newspapers or more were sponsored by printers Concept and Content:-Historical record EX: Public Occurrences; Boston Newsletter o Furnish once a month with an account of such considerable things as have arrived unto our notice. o Report what happened first, and next, etc....
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- Spring '08