This assignment asks you to apply concepts and questions of discourse analysis to historical newspapers and periodical literature of 19th century Philadelphia. Discourse analysis is an approach that looks "beyond the sentence" to consider the motivation(s) of a text and the context in which it was produced.
Selecting your primary source material is the most important decision you will make as you undertake this project. Try to give yourself sufficient time to explore multiple options. You will want to choose materials that invite numerous questions related to the themes discussed in class and are rich and complex enough to allow for extended analysis and interpretation.
The resources on this page will help you identify historical newspaper and periodical literature from 19th century Philadelphia.
Select one newspaper or periodical issue below to examine with your group. Scan through the headlines and skim/read a few articles. What is interesting in this publication? Why? What image of the city or its inhabitants does this text produce for its readers?
(Pro tip: Read aloud - you'll notice things differently by reading this way)
To narrow your results, search by place of publication:
The following links will take you to specific Philadelphia newspapers:
With digital, full-color reproductions of over 7,500 titles, the AAS Historical Periodicals Collection greatly expands and enhances access to eighteenth- and nineteenth-century U.S. magazines and journals for the University of Puget Sound campus.
For more details about working with the AASH Periodicals, visit our collection guide: https://library.pugetsound.edu/AAS
Advanced Search Strategies
Title Lists by Subject
Each periodical title in the AAS Historical Periodicals collection is assigned to at least one broad subject category. This can be useful if you know, broadly speaking, the kind of periodical you want to explore, but don't know specific titles.
EBSCO provides titles lists with subject categories for each of the five series in both HTML and Excel formats. Downloading the list in Excel format will allow you to sort by category or place of publication.
Series 1 Titles (1684-1820)
Series 2 Titles (1821-1837)
Series 3 Titles (1838-1852)
Search digitized newspapers by state or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present (top right) to identify specific publications. Not all newspapers in Chronicling America are available digitally. The directory of newspapers published in the United States since 1690 can help identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access them.