The Struggle for the Soul of Journalism

The Pulpit versus the Press, 1833-1923

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Ronald R. Rodgers
Journalism in Perspective
  • Columbia, MO: 
    University of Missouri Press
    , April
     366 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Diane Winston forthcoming.


In this study, Ronald R. Rodgers examines several narratives involving religion’s historical influence on the news ethic of journalism: its decades-long opposition to the Sunday newspaper as a vehicle of modernity that challenged the tradition of the Sabbath; the parallel attempt to create an advertising-driven Christian daily newspaper; and the ways in which religion—especially the powerful Social Gospel movement—pressured the press to become a moral agent. The digital disruption of the news media today has provoked a similar search for a news ethic that reflects a new era—for instance, in the debate about jettisoning the substrate of contemporary mainstream journalism, objectivity. But, Rodgers argues, before we begin to transform journalism’s present news ethic, we need to understand its foundation and formation in the past.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Ronald R. Rodgers is Associate Professor of Journalism at the University of Florida and lives in Gainesville, Florida.

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