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What role did the mass media (print and radio) play in nationalist movements in Africa?
Mass media played a role as a revolutionary tool for political education and mobilization as well as countering colonial propaganda.
Why did so many African leaders have a background or experience in journalism?
Because mass media serves positive functions by informing, education, mobilizing, and motivating the people for national development; learning the relationship between mass media and politics from colonial structure.
What were the main tasks facing the new leaders of independent African nations in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s?
When African countries became independent, they inherited the situation where there was a creation of market in Africa for European export without developing any sort of industrial base, so they had to industrialize without necessary infrastructures. Also, they had to overcome the way they participate in global markets as source of raw materials and cheap labors.
What were the big obstacles they had to overcome?
They had to modernize societies, build national identities, political integrations, national economics, and services for people.
How did they envision the role of the mass media in accomplishing those tasks and overcoming those obstacles?
Mass media could play a role for priming people to modernize. Also, it promoted mass mobilization for development such as promoting government policy, working toward national cohesion and integration, and popularizing government leaders.
Why did African leaders have a tendency to try to control or direct the mass media?
They wanted to use media as an ideological tool; they knew how they used mass media to build the movements to overthrow colonialism, so they were concerned about the possibility of other people using mass media to overthrow them.
In his book, Cooper choose to talk about the past of the African present beginning with the period of late colonialism (1940s). What are the advantages for understanding the mass media in Africa by taking this approach, rather than positing a clean break between colonial and postcolonial Africa?
Mass media is the enterprise of colonialism; you can see continuities from colonial period to present day; even after independence, the countries inherited something from the colonial period; there are the impacts that different colonial policies have on the media.
shapes information and transmission in Africa; has a legacy for how subsequent technologies develop such as print media; the media we are talking about (print, radio, television) are coming in this different context; Ziegler and Asante say oral tradition is still relevant in Africa today; print forms did not replace oral forms, and they just fit into a broader sphere of passing information around
a community, constructivism approach for the group of people who see themselves belonging together, having something in common such as goals, histories; you can have a nation that extends the boundaries of the states you call nation-state, which tends to develop in modern Europe such as France and Britain; but in Africa, the situation is different since the states boundaries were drawn on the map by colonial powers, and they do not necessarily correspond to what you may think as nationalist groups such as people speak the same language or people have the same ethnic background; one example is Somali people because you can find them in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya
there was an effort to create a common feeling of nation among people who are bounded by the colony, the border of the colony in order to bring them together to force against colonial powers, that was what Kwame and Nnamdi tried to do; to create a sense of national identity among people speaking different languages, having different ways of life, who just happened to be forced together
1990's onward movements to promote liberal democracy in Africa through things like constitutional reforms, multiparty elections
increasing debt burden of African countries come to a point that during the 1970's to 1980's debt was much more than the countries' gross demotic products, governments' revenues; debt burden was so great that international organizations had to come up with programs to reduce debt of African countries
president of Ghana, arrested by british colonial authorities, non-aligned movement, pan-africanism
believed in the necessity of a politically and economically unified Africa, promoted african socialism
included people's point of view, president of nigeria
- imagined, limited, sovereign, communities
- *mass media enable nations to come into being; nationalism initially emerged with the development of "print capitalism"
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