Communication As Culture: The Case Of The Telegraph Analysis

Improved Essays
The essay ‘The case of The Telegraph’ by James W. Carey, is part of his anthology entitled ‘Communication as Culture: Essays on Media and Society' (Carey, 1989). The novel was written in 1989 when the internet and other forms of technology were becoming fully integrated into society. Carey wrote the book because he felt the need to understand the origin of technology to better comprehend the relevant trajectories at the time (Carey, 1989).
In the book, and more specifically the article ‘The case of The Telegraph,' Carey dedicates a chapter to the imperative analysis of the telegraph (Carey, 1989). By analyzing the historical, the sociological, and materialistic context, Carey explains the way the telegraph separated communication and transportation
…show more content…
I believe that an argument could be made that the telegraph is possibly even more important than the invention of the telephone. While the phone is commonly associated with communication, as pointed out previously, in modern society (2017) ‘typing’ is the often-preferred mode of dialogue (Crystal, 2008). People often do not have cell phone call credits, and only 46% of American households have landlines (Press, 2017). This non-verbal aspect of the Telegraph seems to have dominated communication technology historically. Additionally, the telegraph used code to convey messages (Coe, 2003), very similar to the way smartphones use emojis, and SMS to communicate messages (Hillebrand, 2010). When using the telegraph, it was common for messages to be charged per character, and so word abbreviation became common (Coe, 2003). While it is no longer customary for individuals to be charged per character when it comes to texting, the common forms of abbreviations are still there (Crystal, 2008). The continuation of this fundamental aspect of the telegraph thus warrants some academic reflections, which is why this article was …show more content…
Carey analyses and deconstructs the complexities of the telegraph intelligently and uniquely than most scholars would have attempted. The point of the article is to prove that the invention of the telegraph was a defining moment in the history of communication technology (Carey, 1989). The thesis statement speaks to the innovations that followed the telegraph, and how they were altered and determined by the statement made by the telegraph (Carey, 1989). This is proven by giving examples of where it altered history. The effects that this communication had on world war two was instrumental to the deconstruction of the Nazi party (Carey, 1989). The freedom given to communication by the telegraph is summarized as it freed communication from the constrictions of transportation and geography (Carey, 1989). It did this by providing long distance communication that was clear and quick. The way that the telegraph altered the telegraph and monopoly capitalism is systemic throughout the economic industry today (Carey, 1989). While Carey’s study was an interesting assessment of the telegraph, I would be interested in taking it a step further by writing a paper on the typewriter. Carey’s work provides useful inspiration, it was laid out succinctly and brilliantly, unlike anything I had previously read on the telegraph. This is significant to relevant studies because it provides another insight into the development of

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    The propaganda and mass meetings that Germany would exploit during Hitler’s reign would forever change its use. It was important at the time because it allowed Hitler to begin his conquest of Europe, and it allowed for the persecution of certain subgroups. It allowed for Hitler to begin a Genocide against the Jews, popularly known as the Holocaust. However, Hitler was smart about executing these “inferior” individuals outside of Germany’s pre-war borders. He learned from the consequences of World War I; he knew to shield the Germans from the terrors of war…

    • 1043 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    Causes Of Ww2

    • 1400 Words
    • 6 Pages

    Additionally, rising tensions due to Japan wanting to expand and isolate its trade system caused for America and European countries to react to the potential loss of an extensive trade system. Finally, German anxiety being built up in Europe, was creating an inevitable World War II. This provides a perfect example to which the extent of World War II was just a continuation of problems produced before and after World War I. The heavy hitters that caused World War I to begin were nationalism, imperialism, militarism, industrialism, and alliances. All of these were contributing factors to the initiation of World War I.…

    • 1400 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Appeasement and the League of Nations combined to help World War 2 come to be. Hitler got everything he asked for while appeasement was running becoming even more powerful. The Treaty of Versailles made the Germans angry, as they wanted to build up their country’s power and respect. They started World War 2 to help accomplish this, showing the world how influential they were. Hitler led the Germans into war and convinced them that war was the right action (Chapman.N, N.D).…

    • 1211 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The introduction of the telegraph brought a new realm of communications that had not ever been done before (Carey, 1991). This in turn was all due to the human need for a communication device, thus leading to the creation and invention of the telegraph. Technological determinists may argue that the telegraph shaped the way we communicate. In some senses this may be true, but it is better to look at this idea from a social deterministic view. The events leading up to the creation of the telegraph called for it’s creation, thus giving societal controls on this invention.…

    • 1190 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The speech that Churchill gave to Parliament in 1938, proved to be extremely significant as he ultimately predicted the Second World War. Churchill saw that Hitler could not be trusted as Hitler’s objective was to expand Nazi Germany. Being able to accurately predict the future can not only prevent millions of deaths but it can also save humanity from a corrupt…

    • 1092 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The change to “suddenly” made the attack seem more targeted at Pearl Harbor instead of it being a part of a series of events. This strengthened Roosevelt’s argument by making America look like Japan’s main target; therefor, subsequently encouraging his audience to be enraged with anger towards Japan. This simple change completely transformed the meaning behind the sentence. I believe this change added to Roosevelt’s overall purpose of his speech. One last major change was in sentence that originally stated “It will be recorded that…

    • 1809 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    The Imitation Game is a movie based on true story that showed us about Britain in World War II era. Through this movie, we invited back turned to the past, where the World War II was happened. The emergence of Nazi party as a form of a revival of Germany made Adolf Hitler want his state became dominant power in Europe. However, the British build an alliance to prevent German. They were desirous to gain dominant power in the field of economic and military.…

    • 1182 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Germany was left in a broken state, it was vulnerable. It was in this state of vulnerability, that Hitler was able to rise to power, and steer Germany back to war. The leadership of Hitler, was another thing that gave rise to WWII. Hitler wanted to make Germany powerful again. He was able to do this by first strengthening Germany’s economy, and rebuilding its army (even though rearming was a violation of the Treaty of Versailles).…

    • 757 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Great Essays

    The interception of radio signals meant the enemy or someone else could receive the signal sent and listen to it for themselves. This was used by spies and other countries to monitor the ideas and strategies by the enemy to gain an upper hand. Radio was also a form of miscommunication. Obviously technology wasn 't the best during World War II meaning that it was very possible for words to be misconstrued and taken out of term. The attack on Pearl Harbor was directly influenced the invasion of Manchuria solely based on fact that the League of Nations just rolled over and accepted the fact that Japan did that.…

    • 1961 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Great Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Many Germans claimed that the postwar treatment Germany had received from Allies, was the reason for ruin of Germany. Even though the claims were not true, it was widely spread opinion in Germany and the government successfully propagated these myths. This situation in Germany created a window for Hitler’s rise to power. He used the cause of undoing Versailles to unite his people. Since the Treaty was enforced by nuclear powers in our scenario, and rational leaders would be deterred by this fact before violating the Treaty.…

    • 1047 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays