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Press and Newspapers


the industrialization of newspapers
the appearance of newspapers
advertising and taxes on knowledge
circulation: the coming of mass readerships
censorship and press freedom
the "new journalism" and the new public
the professionalization of journalism
politics and the press

Newspapers, although vital to Europe's commercial and political culture well before 1789, underwent profound changes in the long nineteenth century. Technological, political, social, and communications revolutions transformed their audiences, appearance, content, journalistic style, and political significance. Once a preserve of elites, they were by 1914 a ubiquitous feature of working-class life, and played an important—if intangible—role in shaping the political destiny of Europe. A shift in the economics of newspaper production was central to these transformations, as newspapers—that is, regular, uniformly titled, dated, printed publications containing miscellaneous recent informational reports—evolved from small-scale enterprises into massive capital-intensive industries.

the industrialization of newspapers

From 1500 to 1814, printing technology changed little. Press output depended on physical strength, employed in pulling a lever to press paper onto a page of set type. The process was labor-intensive, time consuming, and offered little opportunity for economies of scale. To increase production above 250 pages per hour required a new press, a new compositor to set the type, and new print-men. Thus when the London Times used the König steam press for the first time on 29 November 1814, it began a printing revolution. Friedrich König's machine could print 1,100 impressions per hour, but by 1830 improved machines could produce up to 4,000.

Early steam presses made impressions onto a flat bed and had significant limitations. They were costly to maintain and power, and quality of output was uneven. These problems were overcome by Richard Hoe's rotary press, first employed by the Parisian newspaper La Patrie in 1846. Shortly thereafter, the stereotype process, introduced by La Presse in 1852 and The Times in 1858, allowed multiple copies of the same page to be cast. This made it possible to imagine a single newspaper serving audiences of hundreds of thousands or even millions.

The realization of this dream depended on further developments. Web sheet feeders, pioneered in the United States, were introduced to Europe by The Times in 1868; cheap paper made from woodpulp rather than rags followed in the 1880s. The cost and speed of compositing were revolutionized in the 1860s by keyboard-based Hattersley machines, and again from the 1880s by "Linotype" machines—which cast new type at each use. However, the take-up of new printing technologies was slow, since local markets were often insufficient to justify purchasing them. In Sweden and other underpopulated countries, national dailies were produced on hand-presses several decades after 1814. From the 1830s and 1840s, investment in steam presses became more attractive. Newly built railways allowed metropolitan dailies to reach national audiences, and from the 1840s telegraph networks revolutionized the speed of news-gathering. Thereafter national newspapers could compete with regional rivals for stories from the provinces.

the appearance of newspapers

The appearance of newspapers changed dramatically across the century. Eighteenth-century newspapers were not visually appealing. A page of newsprint usually comprised two or more columns of tightly cramped text, without headlines or illustrations, except, very occasionally, woodblock prints supplied by advertisers. Most newspapers were only four or eight pages long, and although many British papers appeared in folio-size editions, Continental papers often adopted smaller quarto or octavo formats. Before 1789, most serious Continental newspapers appeared in the traditional "gazette" format, reproducing stories verbatim from other sources under their dateline and place of origin, without editorial comment or gloss. This was true even of the Gazette de Leyde, Europe's most celebrated paper of the 1770s and 1780s, or the Hamburgische Unpartheyische Correspondent (Hamburg impartial correspondent), the continent's best-selling daily in the decade after 1800.

By 1900, newspapers were much more eyecatching, not least due to innovations pioneered by John Walter (1739–1812), founder of The Times. Realizing that newspaper readers wished to inform themselves quickly without wading through entire blocks of text, he introduced headlines so they could pick out stories that interested them. This innovation spread rapidly, and soon became universal. Walter also experimented with print sizes and fonts to develop a clearer typeface, "Times Roman," to enable readers to scan pages more rapidly.

Illustrations also began to appear. In the 1830s, the Penny Magazine pioneered the commercial use of Thomas Bewick's wood engraving process, and with the foundation of the weekly London Illustrated News in 1842, the technology spread to newspapers. Illustrated newspapers proliferated rapidly across Europe: Germany's Leipziger Illustrierte Zeitung and France's L'Illustration were founded as early as 1843. However, in the 1880s, the development of the halftone process for reproducing photographs sounded the death-knell for these papers. Cheaper and better adapted than woodblock prints to the demands of daily publication, halftone technology could illustrate stories in the quotidian press. By 1900, news photographs were a vital aspect of news reporting. As editors realized the emotional power of printed images, photographs increasingly determined both an item's newsworthiness and public reactions to stories.

Not all technical developments improved the look of newspapers. In particular, the introduction of wood pulp made for a poorer appearance and reduced durability. However, the low cost of wood pulp paper allowed for larger newspapers at a lesser price, and thereby pleased advertisers and readers alike.

advertising and taxes on knowledge

Two further developments made late-nineteenth-century newspapers more affordable. The first was the demise of "taxes on knowledge" and other provisions designed to prevent the lower orders from acquiring newspapers. In early-nineteenth-century Britain, where stamp duty and paper taxes were most burdensome, they inflated newspaper prices three or fourfold. At their height, The Times cost 7 pence per edition, perhaps a sixth of a London artisan's daily wage, and half that of a worker in the provinces. In addition, stamp duty on advertisements increased advertising costs by about 50 percent. High prices promoted the development of a vigorous, illegal, unstamped radical working-class press, and a vociferous campaign for the stamp duty's abolition, until it was substantially reduced in 1837, and finally scrapped in 1855. The paper tax survived until 1860.

An alternative method of pricing papers beyond working-class pockets—favored in France and Russia—was to insist that subscribers pay in advance. This was kinder on the pockets of the wealthy, while still preventing those without surplus cash from buying newspapers. Such measures were never fully effective, as entrepreneurial booksellers hired out newspapers by the hour, often illegally, and newspapers were available in coffee-houses, libraries, public reading rooms, and by joint subscriptions. Thus, by 1850, most governments had bowed to the inevitable and tolerated "boulevard sales" of individual copies of popular newspapers.

Newspaper prices also fell because growing commercialization, mass production, and expanding popular markets boosted advertising revenues. Eighteenth-century newspaper advertising targeted a small, wealthy elite, but late-nineteenth-century papers marketed cheap, branded goods to the lower bourgeoisie and wealthier urban workers, who increasingly depended on a market economy—rather than household manufacture—for products like soap, candles, clothes, and foodstuffs. As prices of manufactured goods fell, newspaper advertising helped to create a democratized commercial culture based on aspiration and emulation. Even in the underdeveloped economy of Russia, the major St. Petersburg and Moscow dailies dedicated around 30 percent of available space to advertising by 1900. By the mid-1840s, newspaper advertising was extensive enough to support specialized advertising agents in Britain, France, and the United States. Originally they sold column space, but from the 1870s American agencies began writing copy and planning advertising campaigns, and these practices quickly spread. By 1878 even Russia had an advertising agency, L. and M. Mettsl and Company. The scale of advertising varied between countries. Britain and France respectively boasted Europe's most and least commercialized presses. The Parisian daily Petit Journal, Europe's best-selling paper between the 1860s and 1900, derived only about 20 percent of its revenues from advertising. Hence French newspapers were dependent on other forms of finance.

circulation: the coming of mass readerships

Mass reading literacy was a further precondition for a mass-circulation press. While this was largely a nineteenth-century development, eighteenth-century literacy rates should not be underestimated. In much of England, Scotland, north-eastern France, the Netherlands, Germany, and Scandinavia, the majority of bridegrooms could sign a marriage register by 1800. In urban areas male signature-literacy rates often exceeded 80 percent. In contrast, signature-literacy was rare in Ireland, the Mediterranean basin, the Iberian peninsula, and central and eastern Europe. Moreover, the 1780s witnessed attempts to establish universal primary education in Baden, the Habsburg lands, and revolutionary France. The success of these projects was limited. Although in France, as in Britain, educational provision rose sharply from the 1830s, universal primary education was only secured in France by Jules Ferry's legislation in the 1880s, and in Britain by the Education Act of 1870. By the late nineteenth century even Russia had achieved widespread literacy, primarily by educating military conscripts. Thus significant increases in both basic literacy rates and the quality of literacy skills stimulated growth in nineteenth-century newspaper readerships.

The potential size of popular audiences was demonstrated by the Penny Magazine, launched in 1832 by the liberal philanthropic Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge to educate the working classes and wean them from radical publications. Produced weekly, it soon achieved sales of over 213,000. A German imitator and namesake, the Pfennigmagazin, launched in 1833, reached over 100,000 subscribers. Within decades, popularly oriented, cheaply priced newspapers were achieving similar success: by the 1860s, the Petit Journal, with sales of 250,000, was the most successful paper yet seen. By 1900 it had become Europe's first million-seller, narrowly outselling London's Daily Mail. A decade later, London's quotidian press was printing over 4,500,000 copies daily. Elsewhere in Europe, sales figures for bestsellers were lower, but still impressive. In 1900, Italy's daily La Tribuna sold around 200,000, while Russia's Novoe Vremya sold about 60,000. Russian newspaper audiences expanded exponentially after the 1905 revolution, and in 1917, stimulated by war and further revolution, the Moscow-based Russkoe Slovo achieved sales of 1,000,000.

The extent of sales growth becomes apparent when these figures are compared with eighteenth-century circulations. Before 1800, individual editions seldom sold over 5,000 copies. At its most popular, during the American Revolution, the Gazette de Leyde's sales peaked at 4,200 subscribers, while in the early 1800s, the Hamburgische Unpartheyische Correspondent's print-run of 40,000 was unprecedented. Local weeklies with single editor-proprietors survived on circulations of two to three hundred well into the nineteenth century.

The rise in readership of individual titles cannot be attributed to press consolidation, since the number of periodicals of all sorts proliferated across the century, while total readerships grew massively. For example, in France in the early 1780s newspaper subscriptions totaled just 45,000, of which 15,000 were for foreign-produced international gazettes. During the Revolution the market for political news exploded: between 1789 and 1792 Parisian papers sold perhaps 300,000 copies daily. Contemporary sources and historians alike estimate that there were between four and ten readers per copy, although many readers read more than one paper. Assuming five readers per copy, the total audience for French newspapers expanded from perhaps 225,000 before the revolution to 1,500,000 thereafter, or from under 1 percent to just over 5 percent of the population. The revival of censorship, state-orchestrated market consolidation, and suppression of participatory political culture under Napoleon caused audiences to decline by 75 percent. Thus, by 1810 newspaper readership was only marginally higher than under the Old Regime. In contrast, in 1900 newspapers reached the majority of French households.

The growth of French newspaper audiences was probably near the middle of the European range. In regions with large, well-educated urban populations, especially northern Germany, the Netherlands, England, and Scotland, the social penetration of newspapers was already considerable by 1800. Stamp duty records for 1801 show that London newspapers (daily and otherwise) sold about 20,000 copies per day and provincial papers, which were mostly weeklies, a further 180,000 per week, suggesting total subscriptions numbered marginally over 200,000 and readership about 1,000,000, or 10 percent of the population. At the other end of the spectrum lay Russia, where newspaper readership was initially much lower and still largely restricted to urban areas prior to 1905.

censorship and press freedom

Early-nineteenth-century rulers were fearful of newsprint and attempted both to limit newspaper circulation and censor content. The case for tight government supervision appeared to be confirmed by the French Revolution of 1789, when budding politicians including Mirabeau; Jacques-Pierre Brissot de Warville; Camille Desmoulins; Jean-Paul Marat; and Maximilien Robespierre built power bases through journalism. Through their newspapers and new essay-style political journalism, these self-styled "tribunes of the people" did more than shape opinion. They also defined the significance of events. Thus the fall of the Bastille was transformed from an attack on a royal powder depot into the symbolic triumph of liberty over despotism. Jeremy Popkin has argued that the revolutionary press actually scripted the revolution, by promoting the nexus of tensions, suspicions, and recriminations that shaped popular actions, and calling for direct action against "enemies of the people." The prominence of journalists among the European revolutionaries of 1830 and 1848 only reinforced elite fears of the press. It is hardly surprising that Russia, Spain, postrevolutionary France, and many Italian and German states employed censorship systems deep into the nineteenth century, with mixed success.

Late-eighteenth-century Germany, for example, comprised a patchwork of states with varying censorship laws. Some were liberal in practice, if not theory, while others, such as Frederick II's Prussia, had rigorous laws but chaotic enforcement. This left loopholes for enterprising publishers and editors to exploit. However, under the Napoleonic occupation practices were standardized and legal or de facto press freedoms extinguished. After 1807 the only significant paper with any degree of autonomy was Johann Friedrich Cotta's Allegemeine Zeitung, but even it had to source political news from Napoleon's official Moniteur. Meanwhile, the Hamburgische Unpartheyische Correspondent declined rapidly after Napoleon commanded it to publish bilingually, thus halving its news coverage. Following the Vienna Settlement, hopes of a more liberal regime were scotched for several decades by the draconian Carlsbad Decrees of 1819, which exacerbated the damage done by Napoleon to the German press.

In Russia, the autocratic government maintained press controls until 1905. The press statute of 1865 offered a whiff of liberty, but this was neutralized by the simultaneous introduction of an arbitrarily administered system of censorship, warnings, and bans. A variety of sanctions existed for papers that displeased the authorities, including the prohibition of street sales. After three warnings a paper would be closed down. Despite these restrictions the Russian press blossomed in the late imperial period: between 1870 and 1894 some 1,400 periodicals were launched there, almost three times the total for the previous twenty-five years. Freedom of expression and an advanced capitalist economy were not necessary preconditions for a flourishing commercial press.

French censorship policy fluctuated wildly. Before 1789 the French domestic press was tightly licensed and censored, and political news had to be sourced from the official Gazette de France. Imported international gazettes, although freer, circulated through the post under license and so operated a rigorous self-censorship. The revolution of 1789 resulted briefly in a free press, guaranteed by the Declaration of the Rights of Man. Aborted by the Terror (1793–1794), press liberty was partially revived under the Directorial regime (1795–1799), despite sporadic clampdowns on

Jacobin and Royalist papers. Press freedom was extinguished by Napoleon, who closed down most Parisian newspapers in January 1800 and only permitted publication of political news that had appeared in the Moniteur. The Constitutional Charter of 1814 restored a liberal press regime, but in 1830 infringements of that liberty by the Polignac ministry precipitated a journalist-led rebellion and change of dynasty. In the next five years radical journalism revived both in Paris and Lyon, where a vibrant workers' press and proto-feminist journals prospered. Press liberty was seriously curtailed again in 1835, reestablished following the revolution of 1848, and restricted once more under the Second Empire (1851–1870). Napoleon III's press regime liberalized in the 1860s, but censorship still existed at his fall in 1870 and was not finally abolished until the Press Law of 1881. The Third Republic was by then ten years old. Hence press liberty was not a necessary concomitant of democratic government.

However, democracy and a freer press often did go hand in hand, especially in Europe's newer nation-states, where the press played a role in nation-building. Liberals also argued for freedom of expression on pragmatic grounds, insisting that it would facilitate the generation and dissemination of socially useful ideas. They also insisted that the masses must be educated politically if experiments in representative government were to succeed and social revolution to be averted. Many contemporaries also linked Britain's commercial success and political stability to its constitution and free press. There thus appeared to be strong practical grounds for experimenting with press liberty. One such experiment occurred in postunification Italy, where liberal press freedoms introduced under the 1848 Piedmontese constitution were extended to the entire peninsula in 1859–1860. Together with Britain and France, late-nineteenth-century Italy enjoyed one of Europe's freest presses. At the same period, the laws of the newly unified Germany and of the Austrian Dual Monarchy allowed less freedom, but were considerably more generous than earlier in the century. The least free press in Christian Europe was in Russia, and even there some gains were made in 1865. In retrospect, the emergence of a freer press might appear almost inevitable, but such liberty was precarious and easily overturned.

the "new journalism" and the new public

Press freedom appeared more attractive as fears that democratization and a cheap popular press would radicalize the lower orders subsided. Such concerns declined for two main reasons. First, political democratization and progressive social legislation met or undercut radical demands. Simultaneously, falling newspaper prices promoted the growth of a cheap, commercially driven, mass-circulation press aimed at working-class readers, and the concomitant rise of the "New Journalism."

After 1870, this "New Journalism," developed in America, was exported to Europe. It catered for the cultural tastes of a newly literate mass audience, entertaining them with easily digestible coverage of sport, grisly crime, human interest stories, and fiction. This was very different from the sophisticated political and didactic role European liberals had hoped the press would play. Under the influence of the "New Journalism," the popular press tended to promote stereotypes, racial prejudice (as demonstrated in much European newspaper comment on the Dreyfus affair), and blinkered, jingoistic nationalism.

By 1900, the "New Journalism," industrialization, and commercialization had transformed successful newspapers into vast capital-intensive industries controlled by powerful capitalist interest groups. This process was accompanied by the consolidation of the newspaper industry in the hands of a few powerful individuals or conglomerates. In 1910, two-thirds of British metropolitan morning daily circulation and over four-fifths of evening daily sales were controlled by Alfred Charles William Harmsworth, Lord Northcliffe; Pearson; or the Morning Leader Group. Lord Northcliffe's Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, Evening News, and The Times alone sold over 1,500,000.

the professionalization of journalism

Alongside these developments, journalism emerged as a distinct profession with its own practices, career progression, established professional practices, and codes of ethics. This change resulted partly from an increase in editorial staff numbers and partly from greater journalistic contributions to reportage. Eighteenth-century newspapers had tiny editorial staffs. Often a single editor-proprietor compiled a newspaper by reproducing extracts from other papers, official publications, commercial correspondence, or other communications. Some international gazettes and enterprising metropolitan papers also paid newsmongers in foreign cities to supply regular newsletters. Comparison of different gazettes suggests that such writers seldom worked exclusively for one paper, and often wrote under the supervision of local political authorities. Thus, especially in continental Europe, many eighteenth-century "gazetteers" were compilers rather than true journalists.

Consequently, newspaper journalism was considered a lowly form of literary activity. Hence, in August 1791, the French revolutionary politician Brissot felt obliged to justify having worked on the Courier de l'Europe several years earlier:

A career as a gazetteer, submitting to the censorship, was repugnant to my principles; but it would assure my independence … Bayle, I told myself, had been a teacher … Rousseau a lackey, and I was blushing at the thought of being a gazetteer! I would honor this calling and it would not dishonor me.

In contrast, a century later, George Gissing's New Grub Street (1891) portrays the editorship of a newspaper or periodical as the ultimate prize for a literary hack. While Gissing's hapless, unworldly novelist Reardon expires in poverty, his friend and rival, the odious Jaspar Milvain, embraces the logic of the marketplace, secures the editorship of a periodical, makes his fortune, and marries Reardon's socially ambitious widow. To a large extent this portrayal mirrored social reality by the 1880s, when editors of large London dailies commanded salaries of between one and two thousand pounds and large staffs of journalists, each with specialized functions. They would include, for example, foreign correspondents. Such correspondents, first employed sporadically by London papers during the French revolution, became more common from the 1840s, as telegraph networks allowed reports to be lodged in real time. Increasingly, too, journalists chased stories and wrote their own copy, even when following up reports from news agencies like Reuters or national press associations, such as Agence France Presse (founded 1851) and the Press Association (founded 1868).

With greater professionalism, better pay, support from advertising, and mass audiences, journalists began to break free from political subsidy and articulate a set of professional standards. The later nineteenth century saw the emergence of journalistic ethics based on a set of ideological and moral claims, above all the assertion that newspapers "represented" (rather than created) "public opinion" and "the public interest." Ethical, that is reliable and hence superior, journalism rested on "objective" reporting and the rejection of political favor and subsidy. Although "public opinion," "the public interest," and "objectivity" are ideological constructs, these ideals developed a powerful hold over the Western psyche. In the public perception, public discourse, and some historical writing, newspapers became synonymous with "public opinion" throughout the twentieth century and beyond, while the appearance of "objectivity" supplied journalists with moral legitimacy, and a theoretical yardstick for judging reporting.

The practical improvement in journalistic ethics can be exaggerated. Early historians of the British press—some of them journalists themselves—offered a narrative in which corrupt, partisan, party-subsidized eighteenth-century newspapers evolved into heroic, impartial, organs of mid-nineteenth-century liberal public opinion. This Whiggish view dominated British historiography as late as Arthur Aspinall's monumental survey of Politics and the Press, c. 1780–1850 (1950). This interpretation exaggerates the importance of political subsidy in late-eighteenth-century Britain. Government subsidies were meager and given primarily to reward support on individual issues. By the 1780s newspapers derived the vast bulk of revenues from advertisers and subscribers, and hence eschewed taking persistently unpopular editorial lines. Also, Whiggish newspaper history was developed before the emergence of the "New Journalism" and yellow press, whose journalistic practices fell short of the lofty ethics of the liberal press.

Moreover, especially in France, political subsidy continued for most of the nineteenth century. There were also serious financial scandals involving newspapers in late-nineteenth-century Italy and France, where papers were bribed not to reveal the Panama Company's precarious financial position. Other corrupt practices, including bribing journalists to puff products, offering inducements for endorsements, and hyping stocks for personal gain undoubtedly continued, although frowned on by more respectable papers. In France, the boulevard press continued time-honored customs such as blackmailing actresses, political figures, and minor celebrities, and accepting bribes from businesses to disparage rivals.

politics and the press

Contemporaries believed, and historians concur, that the political power of the press, increasingly described as "the Fourth Estate," grew across the nineteenth century. Nevertheless, while there are some spectacular examples of the pressure the press placed on individuals or governments, above all the 1830 revolution in France, it is more difficult to discern newspapers' day-to-day influence in shaping cultural and political life. Yet this influence was extensive. The press was, for example, undoubtedly instrumental in evoking "imagined national communities" based on a shared, media-mediated experience and culture, and in promoting greater linguistic homogeneity within state borders. Moreover, the yellow press seems to have contributed significantly to the development of a distinctively working-class culture, filling the lower orders' leisure reading with a diet of sport, scandal, crime, sensation, and jingoistic nationalism.

Whiggish interpretations of newspaper history also suggest that the nineteenth-century liberal press played a key role in the emergence, formation, and leadership of public debate, although such claims are contentious. In the most suggestive treatment of the subject, Jürgen Habermas argues that the golden age of public debate was in fact the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. At that stage, an educated, enlightened middle-class public opinion participated in genuine constructive rational-critical debate over issues of public policy in the print media and sociable institutions such as salons, coffee-houses, clubs, and reading rooms. The pronouncements of this autonomous limited "public" were soon invested with considerable moral authority, and hence able to influence state policy, even in absolutist states. However, during the nineteenth century, the twin processes of commercialization and democratization undermined the quality of public debate, as the rational and informed judgments of the elite were supplanted by ill-informed popular prejudice, largely shaped by the yellow press.

Habermas's claims have been influential, although it is unclear whether his account of the eighteenth-century press was intended as a description of reality or an ideal standard. Moreover, critics point out that eighteenth-century public debate was often partisan rather than consensual, especially after the French Revolution polarized Europeans ideologically. It was often characterized by irrationality and appeals to emotion, prejudice, or religious faith. Also, the audience for eighteenth-century newspapers was less thoroughly "bourgeois" and the press generally less autonomous of governments than Habermas supposed. Nor did newspapers provide an open forum for debate, or repository for opinion, save that of governments or powerful corporate bodies. Lacking much editorial opinion and drawing their information from official publications and public manifestos, they provided materials, rather than a forum, for political discussion.

Fewer critics have concentrated on Habermas's portrayal of the nineteenth-century decline of the liberal public sphere, which is overpessimistic. Certainly the hold of powerful commercial interests over the newspaper press was tightened, giving them control over the vital agenda-setting function of the media, by which it determines what subjects readers contemplate on a daily basis, if not how they actually think. However, the long nineteenth century also witnessed counterdevelopments including, in many countries, the establishment of constitutionally guaranteed freedom of expression; the spread of editorial content and a combative journalism of opinion; and the adoption of letters pages and columns that opened the range of political opinions on offer, even in partisan papers. Even yellow press journalism, which may be decried for thwarting liberal dreams of a didactic press educating the working classes, also operated as a valuable social control, helping to steer them away from violent social revolution. The press thus helped to smooth the transition to more representative forms of government in many states of Europe, even as it nurtured the militaristic nationalisms that so exacerbated the cataclysm of 1914–1918.

See alsoDickens, Charles; Jingoism; Literacy; Photography; Popular and Elite Culture; Trade and Economic Growth; Transportation and Communications; Zola, Émile.


Barker, Hannah. Newspapers, Politics, and English Society, 1695–1855. Harlow, U.K., 2000.

Barker, Hannah, and Simon Burrows, eds. Press, Politics, and the Public Sphere in Europe and North America, 1760–1820. Cambridge, U.K., 2002. The first attempt at an international survey of the press during this period in two hundred years.

Brennan, James. The Reflection of the Dreyfus Affair in the European Press, 1897–1899. New York, 1998. An impressively wide-ranging comparative study, offering useful, if uneven, summary background on the press in five different states.

Collins, Irene. The Government and the Newspaper Press in France, 1814–1881. London, 1959. Still useful survey of French government press policy from the Restoration to the end of censorship under the Third Republic.

Habermas, Jürgen. The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society. Translated by Thomas Burger. Cambridge, Mass., 1989. First published in German in 1962, Habermas's comparative treatment of the public spheres of Germany, France, and Britain ranks among the most influential doctoral theses of all time and has an enduring heuristic value.

Lee, Alan J. The Origins of the Popular Press in England, 1855–1914. London, 1976. Still a valuable case study of the British context.

McReynolds, Louise. The News under Russia's Old Regime: The Development of a Mass-Circulation Press. Princeton, N.J., 1991. Impressive scholarly study of the coming of Russia's mass-circulation press covering 1855–1917.

O'Boyle, Lenore. "The Image of the Journalist in France, Germany and England, 1815–1848." Comparative Studies in History and Society 10 (1968): 290–317. Despite dated overemphasis on class issues, this remains a valuable and unique comparative essay.

Popkin, Jeremy D. Revolutionary News: The Press in France, 1789–1799. Durham, N.C., 1990. A thoughtful and stimulating treatment of the revolutionary press and its cultural significance.

Smith, Anthony. The Newspaper: An International History. London, 1979. Bold and readable attempt at an international synthesis, although it draws heavily on English and French examples. Aimed at a nonspecialist readership.

Stephens, Mitchell. A History of News from the Drum to the Satellite. New York, 1988. Aimed at a popular audience, but based on much fascinating material.

Simon Burrows

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