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Dicuss the Roles that English Language Newspapers Play in India - Essay Example

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The Roles that English Language Newspaper Play in India Name of Institution Date: Abstract In India, there are 15 languages recognized by the government as official. This separates the regions along linguistic lines and, therefore, there is need to unite the country along a common language…
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Dicuss the Roles that English Language Newspapers Play in India
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Download file to see previous pages From the study, it is evident that English has helped foster nationalism in India. Moreover, newspapers have been an agent for social change helping bring land reforms and enhancing liberation struggle. Introduction In India, the English speaking population is estimated at 4 percent of the total figure (Hohenthal, n.d). Consequently, English is not categorized among the fifteen national languages used in India. According to Hohenthal (n.d), there was a provision in the Indian constitution which allowed English to be used as an official language until 1965 after which it would be replaced by Hindi. However, efforts to remove English as the official language faced much opposition from Dravidians in the south. Following much opposition, the government gave in and recognized English as the associate official language in India (Hohenthal, n.d). Additionally, English is used as the official language in four states: Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura and Meghalaya. However, English has not been fully accepted in India as political and nationalists pushing for Hindi to be recognized as the sole national language (Hohenthal, n.d). Despite this opposition and different reception of English in the society, its role in media is increasing (Hohenthal, n.d). English newspapers, magazines and journals are increasing in number. Hohenthal (n.d) writes that out over 19,000 newspapers were recognized in India; 18.7 percent were in English while 27.8 percent were in Hindi. This leads to debate on the role of the English language newspapers in India; yet the population speaking the language is insignificant in number and most of them are multilingual. In addition to informing the public, newspapers serve various roles, as discussed by Harbermas and Anderson. Harbermas explained that newspapers are important in public sphere to enhance rational debate while Anderson noted that newspapers serve a role of creating nationalism. Discussion In India, more than 107 million copies of newspapers circulate daily, making it one of the largest newspapers markets in the world (Krishna, 2011). It is further pointed that India accounts for over 20 percent of the global dailies. The English-language newspapers consumption is growing steadily, enjoying the biggest share from the print industry revenues (Krishna, 2011). A joint research conducted by KPMG in conjunction with the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry revealed that demand for the English language newspapers is estimated to grow by 7 percent annually from 2011 to 2015 (Krishna, 2011). Some players in the industry have even decided to concentrate in distribution of the English newspapers in some states previously dominated by native language newspapers, such as Kerala (Print media set to "see a churn" in South Indian state, 2012). These statistics show that most Indians read newspapers which shows that they serve a certain purpose in the lives and to the society in general. Newspapers are part of the print media; understanding their role and development can be pegged from the theory developed by Benedict Anderson and Jurgen Harbermas (Jeffrey, 2009). According to Habermas, press is the most preeminent public sphere institution. Schudson (2003) asserted that print is important because it allows rational deliberation among intelligent citizens in the public sphere. From the point of view of Anderson, newspapers and other forms of printed media help create a common ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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