Popular Media and the American Revolution : Shaping Collective Memory
The American Revolution—an event that gave America its first real "story" as an independent nation, distinct from native and colonial origins—continues to live on in the public's memory, celebrated each year on July 4 with fireworks and other patriotic displays. But to identify as an American is to connect to a larger national narrative, one that begins in revolution. In Popular Media and the American Revolution, journalism historian Janice Hume examines the ways that generations of Americans have remembered and embraced the Revolution through magazines, newspapers, and digital media.
Overall, Popular Media and the American Revolution demonstrates how the story and characters of the Revolution have been adjusted, adapted, and co-opted by popular media over the years, fostering a cultural identity whose founding narrative was sculpted, ultimately, in revolution. Examining press and popular media coverage of the war, wartime anniversaries, and the Founding Fathers (particularly, "uber-American hero" George Washington), Hume provides insights into the way that journalism can and has shaped a culture's evolving, collective memory of its past.
Dr. Janice Hume is a professor and head of the Department of Journalism in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia. She is author of Obituaries in American Culture (University Press of Mississippi, 2000) and co-author of Journalism in a Culture of Grief (Routledge, 2008).