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Past and Present With Jill Lepore: The 1765 Death of Newspapers

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Jill Lepore, professor of American history at Harvard, staff writer at The New Yorker and author of The Whites of Their Eyes: The Tea Party’s Revolution and the Battle Over American History, is our weekly guest for the month of May. She will discuss how four past historical moments have influenced the present political and social climate in the United States.

Today's historical moment: The death of newspapers in 1765.

Guests:

Jill Lepore
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Comments [2]

kmarnyc from New York CIty

Could you ask Ms. Lepore about the role James Franklin (older and apparently quite domineering brother of Benjamin) played in establishing the moral standard of "hypocrisy" in American culture when he went after Cotton Mather's "vaccination" advocacy quite aggressively in his Boston paper? It turned out it was a position which put JF in jail for a time, and was of course a position which was soon proven to be wrong. But I've been working on a thesis claiming that JFranklin's wielding of the “hypocrisy sword” in his journalistic rhetoric continued a "hypocrisy-monitoring" thread (ironically initiated by the Puritans, though here JF uses it against them) that remains with us to this day because of its unique ability to unify norms in the midst of the multi-valued culture we have now. I’d be curious to hear whether Lepore has any observations on this.

May. 05 2011 07:46 AM
Estelle

Love this! I look forward to upcoming installments.

May. 04 2011 05:07 PM

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