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Title: The British colonial press coverage of the Indian Rebellion of 1857-8 and its relationship to local concerns
Author: Loch, Ralph S.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8507 9175
Awarding Body: Oxford Brookes University
Current Institution: Oxford Brookes University
Date of Award: 2018
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The purpose of this thesis is to examine the many aspects of identity, in the varied colonies and settlements of the British Empire. It achieves this through investigating the impact that the Indian Rebellion of 1857-8 had on perceived localised issues of identity, interests and the lands that they inhabited. It uses the colonial press copy on one of the Empire’s primary news events, the Rebellion, as source material. Much of the literature on the imperial press covers later periods during which the telegraph system was in place, news agencies were fully developed, and efficient mass printing presses had cut production costs. The newspaper had become a consumer item, as a consequence of the removal of taxes. The existing surveys of the press reaction to the Rebellion concern specific issues or are limited in location and number of journals utilised. Each of the four substantive chapters of this thesis analyse different aspects of identity, by taking specific issues and relating them to colonies or the groups that inhabited them. In the first chapter the island of Ireland is used to examine the issues of religion and ethnicity followed by the divisions those created. The second chapter focuses on at settler colonies and their desire to establish a place and position in the empire by contributing men, material and finances. For this set of concerns British North America, the Cape Colony and Australia were the examples. The Straits Settlements and Burma are also used as locations, in which the European population was seeking to replace East India Company rule with that of the British state. The third chapter uses as an example the colonies of British North America to examine the divided loyalties in settler colonies. The fourth employs several colonies with plantation economies to look at the need for labour and the threat that Indian labour, free or convict, might present. In the final chapter empire wide copy was utilised to compare and to contrast the two visions of the combatants, both European and Indian, and aspects of them to determine if a cross-imperial viewpoint was arrived at, or whether these were local views made homogeneous by the types of people who expressed them.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral