Question: Explain how the print culture assisted the growth of nationalism in India.
- New ideas and debates: There were many who criticized the existing practices and campaigned for reforms, while others countered the arguments of the reformers. These debates were carried out openly in public and in print. Printed tracts and newspapers not only spread the new ideas, but they also shaped the nature of the debate. All this assisted the growth of nationalism.
- Connecting various communities: Print did not only stimulate the publication of conflicting opinions amongst communities, but it also connected communities and people living in different parts of India. Newspapers conveyed news from one place to another, creating pan-Indian identities.
- Print and newspaper: Despite repressive measures, nationalist newspapers grew in numbers in all parts of India. They reported on colonial misrule and encouraged nationalist activities. When Punjab revolutionaries were deported in 1907, Balgangadhar Tilak wrote with great sympathy about them in Kesari.
- Various novels on national history: Many novels written by Indian novelists like Bankim’s Anandamath created a sense of pan-Indian belonging. Munshi Premchand’s novel, Godan highlighted how Indian peasants were exploited by the colonial bureaucrats.
- Various images of Bharatmata: Printers like Raja Ravi Verma and Rabindranath Tagore produced images of Bharatmata which produced a sense of nationalism among Indians The devotion to mother figure came to be seen as an evidence of one’s nationalism.
Question: Why did some people fear the effect of the easily available printed books? Choose one example from Europe and one from India.
Explain the role played by print in bringing about a division in the Roman Catholic Church.
Explain the role played by print in the spreading of Protestant Reformation.
Answer: Not everyone welcomed the printed books and those, who did, also had fear about them. Many were of the opinion that printed words and the wider circulation of books, would have a negative impact on people’s minds. They feared that if there was no control over what was printed and read, then rebellious and irreligious thoughts might gain importance. There was also fear in the minds of scholars that the authority of ‘valuable’ literature would be destroyed. The new print was criticized by religious authorities, monarchs, as well as by writers and artists.
Let us consider the implication of this in one sphere of life in the early modern Europe, i.e., religion.
Martin Luther was a German monk, priest, professor and a Church reformer. In 1517, he wrote Ninety Five Theses and openly criticized many of the practices and rituals of the Roman Catholic Church. A printed copy of this was pasted on a Church door in Wittenberg. It challenged the Church to debate his ideas. Luther’s writings were immediately copied in vast numbers and read widely. This led to a division within the Church, and led to the beginning of the Protestant Reformation.
Manx; conservative Funds believed that a literate girl would be widowed and Muslims believed that educated women could get corrupted by reading Urdu romances. There were many instances of women defying this prohibition.
Question: Write about the different innovations in the printing technology during the 19th century?
- By the mid-nineteenth century, Richard M. Hoe of New York had perfected the power-driven cylindrical press. This was capable of printing 8,000 sheets per hour. This press was particularly useful for printing newspapers.
- In the late nineteenth century, the offset press was developed which could print up to six colours at a time.
- From the turn of the twentieth century, electrically operated presses accelerated printing operations.