Information and propaganda in the federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland with special reference to print and radio propaganda for Africans, 1953-1963

Abstract

This thesis contributes to the history of the information and propaganda policy and practice of the government of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland by examining this government's pro-Federation print and radio propaganda for Africans in the Federation. Using a multi-theoretical approach, it analyses the character of this propaganda, highlighting its main methods and themes as well as the policy considerations, plus political and economic circumstances that gave rise to it. It also discusses how Africans in the Federation reacted to this propaganda and assesses its effectiveness in gaining the support of these Africans for Federation and the policies of the Federal government. The thesis argues that Federal government propaganda aimed at gaining the support of Africans for Federation was predominantly panic-driven propaganda and was the product of an information panic that lay at the heart of the very idea of Federation itself. This information panic arose out of the Federal government's belated recognition of the strength of African opposition to Federation and of how this opposition seriously threatened the continued survival of the Federation. It is also argued that this panic-driven pro-Federation propaganda elicited largely hostile reactions from the majority of Africans in the Federation and failed to persuade them to support Federation

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Rhodes Repository (SEALS)

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This paper was published in Rhodes Repository (SEALS).

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