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Title: Popular Journalism and Working Class Attitudes 1854-1886 : A Study of Reynold's Newspaper, Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper and the Weekly Times.
Author: Berridge, V. S.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3461 7074
Awarding Body: Birkbeck (University of London)
Current Institution: Birkbeck (University of London)
Date of Award: 1976
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The analytical examination of mass circulation newspapers is used to draw conclusions about the papers themselves - their development, readership, distribution, and relations with their readers - and also about the lives and attitudes of those readers as revealed in newspaper content. Reynolds's Newspaper and Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper were the two most important mass circulation popular papers of this period, both with recognisable roots in earlier traditions of the radical workingclass press. Readership and distribution patterns offer some explanation of their relative patterns of success and stagnation. In Reynolds's, both readers - among skilled artisans of the 'older' trades with ,a section of unskilled readers in the armed forces - and distribution - provincially based and hence open to competition from the rising provincial radical press - was, like circulation, relatively stable and static over the thirty year period. Lloyd's readership - a more general cross-section, with pretensions to shopkeeping and a considerable female element, was broader, and its distribution more general, although with a considerable emphasis on London. The papers in general present a microcosm of lower class life which sUPPlements,contradict1or reaffirms views about such a culture at this period. Patterns of leisure and of consumption revealed in particular through advertising demonstrate the beginnings of an era of relative affluence for the upper levels of the working class. Self help and voluntaryism were important - even, for instance, in education, where the 1870 Education Act appeared less of a 'landmark' in working class eyes than it has to subsequent commentators. The papers also indicate the broader preoccupations of their readers. The 1870's was, in many ways, a crucial decade. It was at this time that working class interest shifted, on the international scene,from the traditional concern with 'nations struggling to be free', to a narrower more self-interested view of foreign affairs. And political events both abroad and at home were dominated, in Reynolds's above all, by an out-dated rhetoric which analysed society in terms of its preindustrial structure and which formed the political counterpart of the papers' commercially motivated sensationalism .
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available