Power Without Responsibility

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Power Without Responsibility
Power Without Responsibility.jpg
AuthorJames Curran and Jean Seaton
Publication date
28 August 2009 (7th edition)
Media typePaperback
LC ClassPN5114.C84 2009

Power Without Responsibility (subtitled: The Press and Broadcasting in Britain or Press, Broadcasting and the Internet in Britain) is a book written by James Curran (Professor of Communications at Goldsmiths College) and Jean Seaton (Professor of Media History at the University of Westminster). Originally published in 1981 by Fontana, it has been translated into several languages and is now in its seventh edition. The title comes from a quote by former British Prime Minister Stanley Baldwin. It details the history of the news media in the UK from the eighteenth century to the present. It has been cited by Noam Chomsky in the introduction to Manufacturing Consent and by him in a televised BBC interview with Andrew Marr. Nick Cohen rated it "the best guide to the British media" in a review for the New Statesman.

Contents (Seventh edition)[edit]

Part I - Press history

  • Whig press history as political mythology
  • The struggle for a free press
  • The ugly face of reform
  • The industrialization of the press
  • The era of the press barons
  • The press under public regulation
  • Fable of market democracy

Part II - Broadcasting history

  • Reith and the denial of politics
  • Broadcasting and the blitz
  • Social revolution?
  • The BBC under threat
  • Class, taste & profit
  • How the audience is made
  • The first new media
  • Broadcasting roller-coaster

Part III - Rise of new media

  • New media in Britain
  • History of the internet
  • Sociology of the internet

Part IV - Theories of the media

  • Metabolising Britishness
  • Global understanding
  • The liberal theory of press freedom
  • Broadcasting and the theory of public service

Part V - Politics of the media

  • Contradictions in media policy
  • Media reform: democratic choices