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A Golden Interlude: Journalists in Early Twentieth Century British Literature

Lonsdale, S. (2010). A Golden Interlude: Journalists in Early Twentieth Century British Literature. Parliamentary Affairs, 64(2), pp. 326-340. doi: 10.1093/pa/gsq059


This article examines fictional representations of journalists and journalism from Guy Thorne's Edwardian bestseller When it Was Dark (1903) through to novels of the interwar years. It examines how literature about journalism and journalists addresses contemporary issues such as the march of technology; the relationship between politics and the press at a time when the franchise was extending; the increasing ‘mediation’ of politics and anxieties about the growth of sensational journalism. Of particular note is the dramatic change in the character of the journalist in these years, from democracy-defending Fourth Estate hero to cynical hack. It concludes that First World War press ‘failings', the ennoblement of press barons, the growing power of a mass medium and the evaporation of social idealism after the war combined to destroy the once heroic image.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a pre-copyedited, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Parliamentary Affairs following peer review. The version of record Lonsdale, S.(2010) A Golden Interlude: Journalists in Early Twentieth Century British Literature, Parliamentary Affairs, 64(2), pp 326-340, is available online at: DOI: 10.1093/pa/gsq059
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Departments: School of Communication & Creativity > Journalism
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