Breaking the News

Jackie Harrison


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British Library Publishing
22 April 2022
ISBN: 9780712354417
240 pages

From the publisher

Whether tainted by suppression or hailed as a liberator of truth, the news is integral to our daily life. From the earliest news reporting over 500 years ago to today's 24-hour coverage of events in print and online, on television and on social media, the scope of news has altered drastically. Fast-evolving technologies and attitudes have shaped not only how we make news, but how we consume it. But what makes an event 'news'? Are we justified in our scepticism about shocking images and inflammatory headlines? Or is the news a vital tool, enabling worldwide activism movements such as #BlackLivesMatter and enforcing necessary scrutiny of the ethics of those in power? Breaking the News asks timely questions about how reporting in Britain has written the narrative for pivotal moments in history. Among them are a grisly seventeenth-century murder, COVID-19 public information campaigns, the NSA leak by Edward Snowden and the news media's treatment of celebrities. Feature biographies also highlight influential news breakers through history, including writer and abolitionist Olaudah Equiano, photojournalist Mohamed Amin and environmental rights activist Greta Thunberg.