Printers and Press Freedom: The Ideology of Early American Journalism / Edition 1 by Jeffery Alan Smith, Jeffery Smith | | 9780195064735 | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Printers and Press Freedom: The Ideology of Early American Journalism / Edition 1

Printers and Press Freedom: The Ideology of Early American Journalism / Edition 1

by Jeffery Alan Smith, Jeffery Smith
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195064739

ISBN-13: 9780195064735

Pub. Date: 05/28/1990

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

In the United States, the press has sometimes been described as an unoffical fourth branch of government, a branch that serves as a check on the other three and provides the information necessary for a democracy to function. Freedom of the press—guaranteed but not defined by the First Amendment of the Constitution—can be fully understood only when

Overview

In the United States, the press has sometimes been described as an unoffical fourth branch of government, a branch that serves as a check on the other three and provides the information necessary for a democracy to function. Freedom of the press—guaranteed but not defined by the First Amendment of the Constitution—can be fully understood only when examined in the context of the political and intellectual experiences of 18th-century America. Here, Jeffery A. Smith explores how Madison, Franklin, Jefferson, and their contemporaries came to see liberty of the press as a natural and vital part of a democratic republic. Drawing on sources ranging from political philosophers to court records and newspaper essayists, Printers and Press Freedom traces the development of a widespread conception of the press as necessarily exempt from all government restrictions, but still liable for the defamation of individuals. Smith carefully analyzes libertarian press theory and practice in the context of republican ideology and Enlightenment thought—paying particular attention to the cases of Benjamin Franklin and his relatives and associates in the printing business—and concludes that the generation that produced the First Amendment believed that government should not be trusted and that the press needed the broadest possible protection in order to serve as a check on the misuse of power.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195064735
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
05/28/1990
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
248
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.73(d)

Table of Contents

Introduction3
Part 1.Philosophies and Practices
I.The English Experience17
II.The Marketplace of Ideas Concept31
III.The Ideals of the Enlightenment42
Part 2.Political and Legal Questions
IV.Sovereignty and Seditious Libel57
V.Demands, Defenses, and Distinctions74
Part 3.The Ideology in Practice: The Case of Franklin and His Partners
VI.The Colonial Journalist: Good Humour'd Unless Provok'd95
VII.The Enlightened Printer: Virtue and Vituperation108
VIII.The Prerevolutionary Printer: The Ideal of Impartiality124
IX.The Revolutionary Journalist: The Court of the Press142
Conclusion162
A Note on Sources168
List of Abbreviations173
Notes177
Index225

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