16 January, 2021

Reading The Reader

There will always be a market for analysis. But will marketers see that in the inkblot?

Prashant Panjiar
Reading The Reader

There never was a golden age of journalism. In the late 19th century, with the spread of colonial wealth and the invention of new technology like the telegram during the Victorian era, correspondents could report on exciting happenings around the globe. London was full of newspapers and magazines which told readers about the workings of the world. It appeared to be a time when journalism was at its best and fullest. Yet, reading these accounts a century or so later, they are remarkable for their limited perception and their willingness to propagate a vision of humanity which upheld the blind imperial ideology of the time. Reports of the 1903-04 British Indian invasion of Tibet, for instance in the Times or the Pall Mall Gazette, are notable for their shallow endorsement of a pointless military escapade, and for their abhorrence of Tibet’s religion, which with its baffling and gaudy ceremony they compared to Roman Catholicism. It is only in small, ‘seditious’ Indian newspapers, most of them published in Bengal,...



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