A Conversation for They Founded America

Rowdy American Journalism

Post 1


Enjoyable entry, Jodan.

Coincidentally, I am reading Eric Burns's Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and the Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism. Very education - the book follows the evolution of the conflict between Jeffersonian democrats and Hamiltonian democrats, with plenty of examples and quotes. Fun stuff with our founding fathers demonstrating an amazing degree of journalistic excess, the Sedition Act of 1798 notwithstanding. All sorts of journalistic malfeasance are detailed including complete fabrications, inuendo, incendiary language, abuse, and character assassination. What most early American newspapers lacked in coverage of actual events, they more than made up for in backbiting and name-calling.

From now on, when I hear complaints about how the news isn't what it used to be, I shall be glad.


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Rowdy American Journalism

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