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Title: British mass media coverage of the late colonial wars in Cyprus and Kenya in the 1950s
Author: Jennings, P. D. T. L.
Awarding Body: University College of Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1995
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The Colonial rebellions in Kenya (1952-60) and Cyprus (1955-60) provide the focus for this study of the ideological and institutional history of the British mass media in the 1950s. Mass media developments in the colonies are not a major theme in this work. The themes of British power and decline, and of national mythology, precede an examination of newspaper and broadcast coverage of the aforementioned colonial rebellions. A radical deconstruction of a broad range of newspaper comment describes the limits of the imperial debate in the liberal press. A similar process is undertaken for the record of BBC coverage of these colonial issues found in the 'Listener' magazine. The Colonial Office Information Services Department's attitude to influence and control of the press are examined; a counterpoint to the trenchant imperialism of colonial officials and imperialist idealogues worried about popular imperial "education". It is argued that the cautious facilitating role of the Colonial Office information officials actually reflected the stable and anodyne nature of the media colonial "debate". A debate too flexible for the most imperialist sections of the British elite nevertheless strengthened the over-arching assumptions of the broad hierarchical orthodoxy. It is further argued that the mainstream consensus emerged without self-conscious engineering on the part of the elites. An ingenuous attachment to the limits of the orthodox debate suggests the systemic internalisation of ideology not the conspiratorial promulgation of propaganda. The development of self-referential, self-reinforcing mind sets justifying material exploitation and oppression results from an evolutionary process with no necessity for central direction. This provides the theme of the concluding chapter: the threat of hegmonic consensus narrows the future.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available