The Stars and Stripes: Doughboy Journalism in World War I

The Stars and Stripes: Doughboy Journalism in World War I

The Stars and Stripes: Doughboy Journalism in World War I

The Stars and Stripes: Doughboy Journalism in World War I

Synopsis

" The Stars and Stripes: Doughboy Journalism in World War I by Alfred E. Cornebise is about the American army newspaper in Europe that ran 71 weekly issues from February 1918 to June 1919; how it began, was produced, and many of the key people involved. It reappeared in World War II."

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Communication Booknotes Quarterly

Excerpt

"Machines just started to print first number of Stars and Stripes. We all wish it Bon Voyage." With these words, P. A. Goudie, the editor of Lord Northcliffe Continental Daily Mail in Paris, where the army paper was printed, announced to Gen. John J. Pershing, the commander- in-chief of the American Expeditionary Forces in France, that a remarkable journalism venture was safely launched. Beginning publication on 8 February 1918, for seventy-one weeks, on every Friday, this weekly appeared, ceasing operations on 13 June 1919. The paper was established primarily for the purpose of improving morale among the troops. To these ends, it sought to encourage and inspire the fearful; to evoke a grin in the face of the horrors of battle; to stimulate the patriotism that was already present; in general to call forth enthusiasm and obedience in doing the many dirty, often boring, jobs associated with the waging of war. The paper also assisted AEF headquarters in managing the anomaly of a democratic army.

The sheet was published in Paris by a remarkable collection of newspapermen, most of whom had experience on American newspapers prior to their entering the army. Essentially civilians in uniform, the men clung to their civilian newspapermen ways, naturally having, on occasion, to take into account military constraints. Men who would be well-known in the future were present, such as Harold Ross, Alexander Woollcott, Grantland Rice, and Franklin Pierce Adams, to mention but a few. Among other things. this work undertakes a study of these people. and the manner in which they produced and managed the paper.

The Stars and Stripes proceeded to set a high journalistic standard for military periodicals--indeed, perhaps for journalism generally--and it comes down to us filled with information revealing much of how the AEF lived; something of what it thought; how it played and fought; certain of its attitudes regarding, for example, the changing status of blacks; how it worshipped and felt about its dead; how it considered its . . .

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