A Narrative History of the American Press  book cover
1st Edition

A Narrative History of the American Press

ISBN 9781138998469
Published August 14, 2018 by Routledge
290 Pages

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Book Description

Beginning with the American Revolution and spanning over two hundred years of American journalism, A Narrative History of the American Press provides an overview of the events, institutions, and people who have shaped the press, from the creation of the First Amendment to today. Gregory A. Borchard’s introductory text helps readers develop an understanding of the role of the press in both the U.S. and world history, and how American culture has shaped—and been shaped by—the role of journalism in everyday life. The text, along with a rich array of supplemental materials available online, provides students with the tools used by both reporters and historians to understand the present through the past, allowing readers to use the history of journalism as a lens for implementing their own storytelling, reporting, and critical analysis skills.

Table of Contents


Ch. 1, Pre-Revolution Print: The Colonial Origins of the American Press

Ch. 2, Thomas Paine, the Partisan Press, and "The Dark Ages of American Journalism"

Ch. 3, The Penny Press: Sensationalism, Populism, and Progress

Ch. 4, Nineteenth-Century Publishing Innovations in Content and Technology

Ch. 5, The Press in the Civil War Era: Pioneers in Print and Photography

Ch. 6, The Press in Transition: From Reconstruction to the Gilded Age

Ch. 7, Muckraking: Reporters and Reform

Ch. 8, Yellow Journalism: Pulitzer and Hearst Battle for Readers

Ch. 9, Public Relations: How the Press Launched an Agency of Its Own

Ch. 10, Early Infotainment in Broadcast and Film

Ch. 11, The Press at War: Propaganda in Print and Film

Ch. 12, The Press in the Cold War: Murrow, McCarthy, and Shakespeare

Ch. 13, New Journalism and the Counterculture: Watchdogs and Watergate

Ch. 14, The Press and the Making of Modern Media



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Gregory A. Borchard, a Professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), USA, teaches courses for the Hank Greenspun School of Journalism and Media Studies in journalism history, reporting, and research methods. Borchard's previous books include Lincoln Mediated: The President and the Press through Nineteenth-Century Media (Routledge, 2015), Abraham Lincoln and Horace Greeley (2011), and Journalism in the Civil War Era (2010).


"The history of this country is the history of journalism. No one tells this story with more care, skill, and elegance than Gregory Borchard." –William McKeen, Boston University, USA

"At last: a Zenger-to-Twitter history of the American press, covering the vast subject from the perspective of journalists and their critics alike, with breathtakingly advancing technologies and the guarantees of the First Amendment as constant subtexts. Gregory Borchard, a leading scholar in this field, has done an outstanding job.  This book should at once become—and remain—the standard reference on the subject." –Harold Holzer, Hunter College, USA