join us on facebook debuts of the month
Search our site
Out of the Blue by Sophie Cameron Read the opening extract of the brand new Sophie Cameron book before its publication on 22/03/2018

Radio's Hidden Voice The Origins of Public Broadcasting in the United States by Hugh Richard Slotten

Radio's Hidden Voice The Origins of Public Broadcasting in the United States

Part of the History of Communication Series


Radio's Hidden Voice The Origins of Public Broadcasting in the United States by Hugh Richard Slotten

&&LI&& Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name: Table Normal ; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent: ; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family: Times New Roman ; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} Since the 1960s, the existence of a largely noncommercial public broadcasting system has become a familiar feature of American cultural and social life. Most histories of broadcasting, however, overlook public radio's early development during the 1920s and 1930s by focusing on the mainstream, hegemonic practices of large commercial stations connected to networks. This focus on the development of the \u0022American System\u0022 of commercial broadcasting as a master narrative has obscured the historical importance of alternative means of radio broadcasting and their complex interaction with dominant trends. Employing extensive research from archives across the United States, Hugh Richard Slotten examines the origins of alternative broadcasting models based especially on a commitment to providing noncommercial service for the public. These stations, operated largely by universities and colleges, offered diverse forms of programming meant not merely to entertain but also to educate, inform, enlighten, and uplift local citizens. Radio stations operated by institutions of higher education were especially significant because they helped pioneer the idea and practice of broadcasting in the United States. Faculty members in physics, electrical engineering, and other technical fields possessed the fundamental scientific knowledge and practical engineering innovation necessary for radio's propagation. Further, the established traditions of public service at universities, especially land-grant colleges in the Midwest, provided a robust framework for offering a publicly available, noncommercial alternative to the emerging commercial broadcast system.


A gem of a look a the birth of public broadcasting. --Jhistory This is a masterful work. It is for anyone interested in exploring the ways in which education institutions helped develop broadcast policy in the United States. --Journalism History Outstanding from start to finish. . . . The author displays exceptional range and depth in exploring not only the interior world of Italian American life, but also the intersections of this group's story with that of other immigrant communities and with society as a whole. . . . Highly recommended. --Choice

About the Author

Hugh Richard Slotten is a senior lecturer at the University of Otago, New Zealand, and the author of Radio and Television Regulation: Broadcast Technology in the United States, 1920-1960 and Patronage, Practice, and the Culture of American Science.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

25th June 2009


Hugh Richard Slotten

More books by Hugh Richard Slotten
Author 'Like for Like'


University of Illinois Press


344 pages


Communication studies



The best new books on the market, reviewed honestly, to give your readers the best choices.

Julie Cook

You'll always find what you never knew you were looking for and you're always spoilt for choice.

Helen Jones

Lovereading takes the guesswork out of finding your next read with "if you like you'll love" and extracts to help with your decision.

Sarah Bruch

It has enriched my leisure time by introducing me to a world of books which I would not have previously considered.

Val Rowe

I love that Lovereading handpicks very special debut reads.

Magda North

Ever purchased a book, read a few pages & thought I'm not going to enjoy this? Honest book reviews mean you'll never have that problem again

Jill Peters

Lovereading recommends, honestly reviews and promotes books-what more can I say?!

Rachel Bridgeman

I love the 'like for like' author recommendations, it's like an old friend whispering in your ear.

Emma Caddick