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- Have you noticed that life, real honest to goodness life, with murders and catastrophes and fabulous inheritances, happens almost exclusively in newspapers?
- Jean Anouilh, as cited in: Stuart Allan (2010) News Culture. p. 1.
- If one were searching for the best means to efface and kill in a whole nation the discipline of self-respect, the feeling for what is elevated, he could do no better than take the American newspapers.
- Matthew Arnold, Civilization in the United States (1888), p. 177.
- Covers Dixie Like the Dew.
- Slogan of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
- A thousand newspapers vulgarise knowledge, debase aesthetical appreciation, democratise success and make impossible all that was once unusual and noble. The man of letters has become a panderer to the intellectual appetites of a mob or stands aloof in the narrowness of a coterie. There is plenty of brilliance everywhere, but one searches in vain for a firm foundation, the power or the solidity of knowledge. The select seek paradox in order to distinguish themselves from the herd; a perpetual reiteration of some startling novelty can alone please the crowd....
- Nietzsche said the newspaper had replaced the prayer in the life of the modern bourgeois, meaning that the busy, the cheap, the ephemeral, had usurped all that remained of the eternal in his daily life.
- Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind (New York: 1988), p. 59.
- Newspapers are being read all around. The point is not, of course, to glean new information, but rather to coax the mind out of its sleep-induced introspective temper.
- Alain de Botton, The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work (2009), p. 237.
- To look at the paper is to raise a seashell to one’s ear and to be overwhelmed by the roar of humanity.
- Alain de Botton, The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work (2009), p. 237.
- The advertising industry almost exclusively underwrites mass media in the United States. Newspapers obtain 75 to 80 percent of their revenue from advertisers, general circulation magazines about half (Jhally 1990).
- Cortese, A. J. (2008). "Provocateur: Images of women and minorities in advertising (3rd ed.)", Oxford, UK: Rowman & Littlefield, p.4.
- The content of newspapers … is not the product of chance. … It is the result of precise psychological … techniques. These techniques have as their goal the bringing to the individual of that which is indispensable for his satisfaction in the conditions in which the machine has placed him … Journalistic content is a technical complex expressly intended to adapt man to the machine.
- Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society (1964), pp. 95-96.
- It is remarkable, all that men can swallow. For a good ten minutes I read a newspaper. I allowed the spirit of an irresponsible man who chews and munches another’s words in his mouth, and gives them out again undigested, to enter into me through my eyes.
- Herman Hesse, Steppenwolf, B. Creighton, trans., (New York: 1990), p. 34.
- Dueling was very much a public matter. Insults, and the challenges to duel that followed, traveled via newspaper editorials, word of mouth and plain old gossip. They also reached a widespread public with "postings" at street corners and taverns.
Few men could resist such a public challenge. Even Abraham Lincoln was called to duel: he had referred to one man as a "smelly, foolish liar" in a newspaper editorial. Lincoln chose swords over pistols, in the hope that his long arms would offer an advantage. He eventually apologized and avoided the duel altogether.
Newspapers at the time were factionalized and expressed very distinct viewpoints. Editors were constantly being challenged and were known to carry sidearms at all times—even in the office—in case an irate reader should wish to dispute an editorial.
- The basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. But I should mean that every man should receive those papers and be capable of reading them.
- Thomas Jefferson, letter to Edward Carrington (January 16, 1787); in Julian P. Boyd, ed., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson (1955), vol. 11, p. 49.
- To your request of my opinion of the manner in which a newspaper should be conducted, so as to be most useful, I should answer, "by restraining it to true facts & sound principles only." Yet I fear such a paper would find few subscribers. It is a melancholy truth, that a suppression of the press could not more completely deprive the nation of its benefits, than is done by its abandoned prostitution to falsehood. Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle. [...] I will add, that the man who never looks into a newspaper is better informed than he who reads them; inasmuch as he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. He who reads nothing will still learn the great facts, and the details are all false.
- Thomas Jefferson, letter to John Norvell (June 11, 1807)
- But let me beseech you, Sir, not to let this letter get into a newspaper. Tranquillity, at my age, is the supreme good of life. I think it a duty, and it is my earnest wish, to take no further part in public affairs. …. The abuse of confidence by publishing my letters has cost me more than all other pains.
- Thomas Jefferson, letter to Charles Hammond, August 18, 1821.—The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Andrew A. Lipscomb, vol. 15, p. 331 (1903).
- Many people there are in this kingdom who never see a Gazette to the day of their deaths, and very mischievous would be the consequences if they were bound by a notice inserted in it.
- Lord Kenyon, Graham v. Hope (1794), 1 Peake, N. P. Ca. 155; reported in James William Norton-Kyshe, Dictionary of Legal Quotations (1904), p. 99.
- On countless occasions during my spell as an assistant in Naples I heard people say about some newspaper or other: è pagato, it’s paid for, it lies for its client, and then on the following day these very same people who had cried pagato were absolutely convinced by some obviously bogus piece of news in the same paper. Because it was printed in such bold type, and because the other people believed it. … I also know that a part of every intellectual’s soul belongs to the people, that all my awareness of being lied to, and my critical attentiveness, are of no avail when it comes to it: at some point the printed lie will get the better of me when it attacks from all sides and is queried by fewer and fewer around me and finally by no one at all.
- Victor Klemperer, The Language of the Third Reich (2002), pp. 207-208.
- Okno na świat można zasłonić gazetą.
- The window on the world can be covered by a newspaper.
- Stanisław Jerzy Lec, Myśli nieuczesane, as translated in James Geary, The World in a Phrase (2011), p. 190.
- For the newspaper is in all literalness the bible of democracy, the book out of which a people determines its conduct. It is the only serious book most people read. It is the only book they read every day.
- Walter Lippmann, Liberty and the News (1920), p. 47.
- I generalized rashly: That is what kills political writing, this absurd pretence that you are delivering a great utterance. You never do. You are just a puzzled man making notes about what you think. You are not building the Pantheon, then why act like a graven image? You are drawing sketches in the sand which the sea will wash away.
- Walter Lippmann, "Books and Things," The New Republic (August 7, 1915), p. 24.
- The newspaper man, if he be a live one, meets all sorts and conditions of persons and learns to analyze men and motives. Thus he learns to create characters and (one word illegible here). He mixes with the saintly and sinful, priest and (one word illegible here), sees virtue and vice in equal portion. In after years as he writes fiction, he is pretty liable to know what he’s talking about. He will make a cop talk a police argot and he won’t have a society leader drinking tea out of a saucer. If more motion picture people had been newspaper men we wouldn’t see so many laughable breaks in the films.
- I stopped reading the comics page a long time ago. It seems that whoever is in charge of what to put on that page is given an edict that states: “For God’s sake, try to be as bland as possible and by no means offend any one!” Thus, whenever something like Doonesbury would come along, it would be continually censored and, if lucky, eventually banished to the editorial pages. The message was clear: Keep it simple, keep it cute, and don’t be challenging, outrageous or political.
And keep it white!
It’s odd that considering all the black ink that goes into making the comics section (and color on Sundays) that you rarely see any black faces on that page. Well, maybe it’s not so odd after all, considering the makeup of most newsrooms in our country. It is even more stunning when you consider that in many of our large cities like New York, Los Angeles, or Chicago where the white population is barely a third of the overall citizenry, the comics pages seem to be one of the last vestiges of the belief that white faces are just…well, you know…so much more happy and friendly and funny!
Of course, the real funnies are on the front pages of most papers these days. That’s where you can see a lot of black faces. The media loves to cover black people on the front page. After all, when you live in a society that will lock up 30 percent of all black men at some time in their lives and send more of them to prison than to college, chances are a fair number of those black faces will end up in the newspaper.
- If we are to express the love in our own hearts, we must also understand what love meant to Socrates and Saint Francis, to Dante and Shakespeare, to Emily Dickinson and Christina Rossetti, to the explorer Shackleton and to the intrepid physicians who deliberately exposed themselves to yellow fever. These historic manifestations of love are not recorded in the day's newspaper or the current radio program: they are hidden to people who possess only fashionable minds.
- Lewis Mumford, Values for Survival (1946).
- On one side is the gigantic printing press, a miracle of fine articulation, which turns out the tabloid newspaper: on the other side are the contents of the tabloid itself, symbolically recording the most crude and elementary states of emotion.
- Lewis Mumford, Technics and Civilization (1934), Chapter 6, § 9, p. 301.
- Sie erbrechen ihre Galle und nennen es Zeitung.
- They vomit their gall and call it a newspaper.
- Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra.
- They vomit their gall and call it a newspaper.
- I know that my retirement will make no difference in its cardinal principles, that it will always fight for progress and reform, never tolerate injustice or corruption, always fight demagogues of all parties, never belong to any party, always oppose privileged classes and public plunderers, never lack sympathy with the poor, always remain devoted to the public welfare, never be satisfied with merely printing news, always be drastically independent, never be afraid to attack wrong, whether by predatory plutocracy or predatory poverty.
- Now let us approach the editor of any newspaper. We’ll suggest that he reduce the formal, strictly political ‘questions of strategy and tactics’ to two pages of the newspaper and that he reserve the first and second pages of the newspaper for extensive articles on practical everyday questions of technology, medicine, education, mining, agriculture, factory work, etc. He will gaze at us devoid of all understanding and in complete perplexity, and he will have doubts about our state of mind.
- Wilhelm Reich, The Mass Psychology of Fascism, (1933), ch. 13, "Vitally Necessary and Other Work".
- Not without a slight shudder at the danger, I often perceive how near I had come to admitting into my mind the details of some trivial affair,—the news of the street; and I am astonished to observe how willing men are to lumber their minds with such rubbish,—to permit idle rumors and incidents of the most insignificant kind to intrude on ground which should be sacred to thought. Shall the mind be a public arena, where the affairs of the street and the gossip of the tea-table chiefly are discussed? Or shall it be a quarter of heaven itself,—an hypæthral temple, consecrated to the service of the gods? I find it so difficult to dispose of the few facts which to me are significant, that I hesitate to burden my attention with those which are insignificant, which only a divine mind could illustrate. Such is, for the most part, the news in newspapers and conversation. It is important to preserve the mind’s chastity in this respect. Think of admitting the details of a single case of the criminal court into our thoughts, to stalk profanely through their very sanctum sanctorum for an hour, ay, for many hours! to make a very bar-room of the mind’s inmost apartment, as if for so long the dust of the street had occupied us,—the very street itself, with all its travel, its bustle, and filth, had passed through our thoughts’ shrine! Would it not be an intellectual and moral suicide?
- So I became a newspaperman. I hated to do it but I couldn't find honest employment.
- Attributed to Mark Twain. Reported as unverified in Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations (1989). Never found by Twain authorities or the Twain Papers staff.
- Modern man … when he looks at his daily newspaper … sees the events of the day refracted through a medium which colors them as effectively as the cosmology of the medieval scientist determined his view of the starry heavens. The newspaper is a man-made cosmos of the world of events around us at the time. For the average reader it is a construct with a set of significances which he no more thinks of examining than did his pious forbear of the thirteenth century—whom he pities for sitting in medieval darkness—think of questioning the cosmology. This modern man, too, lives under a dome, whose theoretical aspect has been made to harmonize with a materialistic conception of the world. And he employs its conjunctions and oppositions to explain the occurrences of his time with all the confidence of the now supplanted discipline of astrology.
- Richard Weaver, Ideas Have Consequences (Chicago: 1948), pp. 93-94.
- In short, if newspapers were written by people whose sole object in writing was to tell the truth about politics and the truth about art we should not believe in war, and we should believe in art.
- Virginia Woolf in The Three Guineas.
- Newspapers ... give us the bald, sordid, disgusting facts of life. They chronicle, with degrading avidity, the sins of the second-rate, and with the conscientiousness of the illiterate give us accurate and prosaic details of the doings of people of absolutely no interest whatsoever.
- Oscar Wilde, Gilbert in The Critic as Artist, pt. 2 (1891).
- If you aren't careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.
- Malcolm X, Speech at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem (13 December 1964), in Malcolm X Speaks (1965), p. 93