The ebb and flow of the Tasman mediasphere : a century of Australian and New Zealand print media development, 1840-1940
conference contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Denis CryleDenis Cryle
The significant contribution of the colonial press to processes of settlement and modernity has been acknowledged across a range of Australian and New Zealand sites, albeit on a case-by-case basis. Noteworthy examples of this are the detailed early nineteenth century accounts of the struggles between colonial newspapers and government over the introduction of the British ideology of a free press. The authoritative Book in Print notes, in the case of New Zealand, that “there has been no general survey of government regulation and control of the printing industry in New Zealand” (Griffith, Harvey and Meslon, 1997:81). Despite significant commonalities across sites and colonies, a similar approach has prevailed among Australian historians, albeit with a growing awareness of the common assumptions and prejudices common to new settler societies (Ihde, 2004). In contrast with New Zealand, political accounts of the early press–government struggles in New South Wales and Tasmania (Van Diemen’s Land) constitute an ongoing preoccupation (Meaney, 1969; Walker, 1976; Morris Miller, 1952; Woodbury, 1972; Cryle 1989), although few of these studies attempt to establish meaningful comparisons between Australian newspapers or the colonies concerned.