Newspapers, the early modern public sphere and the 1704-5 Worcester affair

Bowie, K. (2015) Newspapers, the early modern public sphere and the 1704-5 Worcester affair. In: Benchimol, A., Brown, R. and Shuttleton, D. (eds.) Before Blackwood's: Scottish Journalism in the Age of Enlightenment. Series: The enlightenment world (29). Pickering & Chatto: London, pp. 9-20. ISBN 9781848935501

103037.pdf - Accepted Version


Publisher's URL:


This paper shows how the proliferation of Scottish newspapers and pamphlets in 1704-5 contributed to an international crisis in Anglo-Scottish relations over the Worcester piracy case and influenced the chain of events leading to the Union of 1707. It considers how far a Habermasian concept of the modern public sphere can be applied to this case. It finds that while newspapers helped to shape public opinion and events in what might be termed a public sphere, there is not a strong fit with the Habermasian model and the case is better understood in terms of an early modern public sphere.

Item Type:Book Sections
Keywords:Public sphere Union of 1707 Scottish history Newspapers Piracy
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Bowie, Professor Karin
Authors: Bowie, K.
Subjects:D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Humanities > History
Publisher:Pickering & Chatto
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 Pickering & Chatto
Publisher Policy:Reproduced with the permission of the publisher

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record