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The black press was born out of a need and that need is still pertinent today. Before 1827, black people largely did not exist in the media. There were only two options for the black community stay silent and keep their marginalized voices to themselves or start voicing those opinions and advocating for rights by creating a newspaper. After 1827, black newspapers in the North developed into the main medium of expression and primary community service outlet for black people. The researcher examined the history of black media from the mid-1800s to 2017. Evidence from black newspapers and publications throughout history shows every success against oppression and inequality has come with a price for black press in the United States. In 2017, blacks have more opportunities because of those publishers whose goal was to elevate and educate blacks. Currently, blacks have improved the second-class citizen status in some respects, but clear inequalities still persist. Although mainstream news organizations have made efforts to represent blacks more, there are still large disparities. The black media is still essential for the well-being of the black community. The black press began as an outlet to acknowledge the black community and push for equality and this kind of activism is still needed today.

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Chad E Painter

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Stander Symposium poster


Presenter: Jada Monique Woods

Unrecognized and Underwritten:The History of the Black Press