“Indigenous” Journalism in Colonial Algeria (1890s to 1950s)

The Contact Society in Colonial Algeria
By Philipp Zessin

Because of their high social and educational levels as well as their engagement in an overwhelmingly European sector of society, “indigenous” journalists could have played an important role in the “colonial encounter” between Europeans and Muslims in Algeria. In reality, however, “indigenous” journalism was profoundly politicized and only partially professionalized. Whether French or Arabic-speaking, its participants suffered surveillance and repression as well as a professional discrimination which was ethnically-based. In a context where the colonized population had few outlets to express their demands, the “indigenous” press in fact played a decisive role; it served as an instrument for the emergence of a Muslim public opinion.


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