Course Description

In 1690, the first newspaper in America closed after one edition. But was it a flop? What happened next? This course will examine news and news gathering over two-plus centuries of American history. Find out why the 1690 paper closed, what came next, and why Virginia’s royal governor railed against free schools and printing presses. How did newspapers help colonists become Americans on the eve of the Revolution? We’ll look at how newspapers in the early republic enabled political parties and vice versa and the Industrial Revolution's influence on journalism. A look at newspapers and the Civil War will sketch in the print culture of Durham and Chapel Hill from 1861 to 1865; another class will examine the state of newspapering at the end of the “long 19th century.” Along the way, we'll identify similarities (there are more than you might think) and differences (besides the obvious, perhaps fewer) between America's earliest newspapers and those of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. | Lecture + Q&A; Facilitated discussion.

PLEASE NOTE: This class is for 10 sessions beginning 9/14-11/23. There is NO CLASS on 9/28.


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Section Title
Newspapers in America: The First Two Centuries
Online - Zoom
1:30PM to 2:45PM
Sep 14, 2020 to Nov 23, 2020
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
Delivery Options
Virtual Classroom  
Course Fees
Section Notes

PLEASE NOTE: This class is for 10 sessions beginning 9/14-11/23 - there is NO CLASS on 9/28.

Please note: Students will be offered the opportunity to critique an archival newspaper and, during class discussion time, compare their observations relative to current day newspapers.