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`Kannada journalism rooted in its first 40 years'

By Our Staff Correspondent

MANGALORE, SEPT. 2. Kannada journalism, which began with the publication of Mangaluru Samachara by Herman Mogling in 1843 at the Basel Mission, Mangalore, took nearly 40 years to establish itself. One can trace all the characteristics of present-day Kannada journalism to this period of growth, Shrinivas Havanur, researcher and former Professor of Kannada, has said.

Delivering a talk on "Early history of Kannada journalism" organised by the Karnataka Theological Research Institute here on Wednesday, Mr. Havanur said the first phase of Kannada journalism began with Mangaluru Samachara and ended with Hithabodini published by M. Venkatkrishnayya from Mysore in 1884. Kannada journalism had established itself by then and developed thereafter.

During this period, the basic framework of modern-day Kannada journalism was established, he said.

Though Christian missionaries printed the most number of newspapers in the first phase, most of them were dedicated to the dissemination of news, Prof. Havanur said. However, a little space was dedicated for religious purposes, he added. A few newspapers of the period also took up the task of commenting on the acts of omission and commission of the then rulers, although in a very subtle manner, he said.

The only element missing was that there was no place for entertainment-related news in those days. Readers got to know about the happenings in other parts of the State and the country, including the Sepoy Mutiny. However, newspapers dedicated to a subject did not flourish, he said.

K.V. Nagaraj, Head of the Department of Mass Communication and Journalism, Mangalore University, presided over the function. J.S. Sadananda, chairperson of the institute, welcomed the gathering and introduced the guests.

Vijaya Kumar, director of the institute, proposed a vote of thanks.

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