ERIC Number: ED151829
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1976-Aug
Reference Count: 0
U.S. Newspaper Content from 1820 to 1860: A Mirror of the Times?
Weaver, David H.
This study examined the content of newspapers from six geographic regions of the United States during three time periods preceding the Civil War (1820 to 1835, 1836 to 1846, and 1847 to 1860). The news articles were coded in nine general categories and rank-ordered for each region. Results indicate that quite similar news sources and news values were employed by reporters and editors in the different areas of the country, in spite of widening social, political, and economic gaps that led to the Civil War. General political, general community, and intellectual/cultural news received heavy emphasis during all three time periods, while news concerning slavery and abolition, sectional differences, and education received relatively little emphasis. Since the results of this study conflict with the contemporary theory of the press's agenda-setting function, further research exploring the processes of news selection and emphasis during the 1820-1860 period is proposed. (RL)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism (59th, College Park, Maryland, August 1976)