When mass literacy was feared by British politicians..


I am currently studying the affects of technology upon the English language, in particular the printing press. I came across this interesting quote:

“..the possibility of mass literacy was feared by British politicians, and when modern literature began to come within the economic reach of ordinary people, church leaders did everything possible to discourage them from reading it. Moreover, with the Stamp Act of 1712, the British government deliberately prevented poor people from reading the news by imposing a heavy tax on newspapers – a tax that was not abolished until 1855.”

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