Exhuming the rags, two centuries on

A new book sheds light on the dynamics of 19th century journalism in Malta.

The Tumas Fenech Foundation for Education in Journalism, in conjunction with the Institute of Maltese Journalists, has recently launched a new book by Arnold Cassola entitled Lost Maltese Newspapers of the 19th Century.

How did the granting of press freedom by the British in March 1839 affect Maltese journalism? Did the newly born newspapers contribute to the popularisation of the Maltese written language?

Why were most of these newspapers so short lived? Were some of these newspapers tools in the hands of Anglican pastors proselytising amongst the Maltese? Has character assassination always been a characteristic of Maltese journalism? What is the relationship between these newspapers and the local theatre scene of the time? Did Gozitans have a role in early Maltese journalism?

These are some of the issues that the author attempts to tackle in this elegant publication which is on sale at Agenda Bookshop outlets.

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