Sunday, February 8, 2009

Chapter 6 Assignments - (Due Feb. 27)

In the lecture discussion of Feb. 5, the class was shown a newspaper that bore the words "published by authority" on its masthead, or flag. This words were a form of "prior restraint." This is the basis for much of the discussion on Chapter 6. Please answer the following questions.

(1) In 1644, John Milton published a pamphlet that would change the concept of press freedom and role of the press. He helped develop the idea that the press was "a marketplace of ideas" and that there should be no "prior restraint" to these ideas. Discuss these two ideas in your own words. Also, what was the name of the pamphlet and what is the origin of the name (web search)?

(2) Review the case of Benjamin Harris' attempt to publish a newspaper titled Publick Occurrences, Both Foreign and Domestic and review why he could not continue. This was discussed in class Feb. 5.
(3) The trial of John Peter Zenger was one of the greatest in American history and in journalism history worldwide. Zenger was helping James Alexander produce the New York Weekly-Journal, a newspaper which ran afoul of New York's Royal Governor William Cosby (also reviewed in class on Feb. 5). Review what happened to Zenger. Review also, Alexander Hamilton's defense found on page 102 of your text. What was Hamilton's chief defense and what did this lead to?
(4) Freedom of the Press was not clearly defined in our new country until the Bill of Rights was sent to Congress for approval in 1789. For the record, was Freedom of the Press the first issue that Congress reviewed? If not, why is it considered the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution?

Please submit answers via email or hard copy.

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