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Graphic NewsHow Sensational Images Transformed Nineteenth-Century Journalism$
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Amanda Frisken

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780252042980

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252042980.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

Introduction

Introduction

Sensationalism and the Rise of Visual Journalism

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Graphic News
Author(s):

Amanda Frisken

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252042980.003.0001

The Introduction questions the legendary origin story for sensational journalism: in the late 1890s, competition between William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer degraded serious journalism into “yellow journalism” – sometimes blamed for the outbreak of the Spanish-American War. The apocryphal story of Spanish authorities strip-searching female Cuban rebels captures sensationalism’s essence: the dissemination of false news to increase sales and further an agenda, through strident headlines, inventive reporting, and eye-catching illustration. As early as 1870, in fact, line illustrations gave commercial publications across the political spectrum tools to attract readers, or perhaps more accurately, “news consumers.” While use of headlines, scoops, and stunts date back to the 1830s, it was the proliferation of images in newspaper pages that came to define sensational journalism by century’s end.

Keywords:   William Randolph Hearst, Joseph Pulitzer, Spanish-American War, Cuban rebels, sensationalism, illustration, visual journalism, yellow journalism

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