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The Fourth EstateJournalism in Twentieth-Century Ireland$
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Mark O'Brien

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780719096136

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719096136.001.0001

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Free State–free press?

Free State–free press?

(p.40) 3 Free State–free press?
The Fourth Estate

Mark O'Brien

Manchester University Press

This chapter examines how a conservative climate impacted on journalism in the newly independent Free State. It surveys the moral crusades against what was viewed as vulgar journalism and the lobbying by vigilance associations to cleanse journalism of content, such as crime reporting, that was considered undesirable. It examines the impact the Censorship of Publications Act 1929 had on journalism by looking at the Waterford Standard case of 1929 and the lesser-known ‘kissing case’ of 1937 – both of which had a long-lasting chilling effect on journalism in Ireland – particularly in relation to media coverage of certain types of crime.

Keywords:   War of independence, Free State, Evil literature, Censorship of Publications, Waterford Standard, Kissing case

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