W T Stead: One Year On
When: Tue 14 May 2013, 18.30-20.00
Where: Foyle Suite, Centre for Conservation
Price: Free, booking essential
Last year saw the centenary of W T Stead's death on board the Titanic.The British Library marked the centenary with a conference and book dedicated to Stead's remarkable life and legacy. One year on, this event reflects on the remarkable range of research produced since the centenary and reconsiders Stead and his legacy post-Leveson.
When Stead died on the maiden voyage of the Titanic in April 1912, he was the most famous Englishman on board. Overlooked until recently, Stead was a towering presence in the cultural life of late Victorian and Edwardian society. He was one of the inventors of the modern tabloid. His advocacy of ‘government by journalism’ helped launch military campaigns. His exposé of child prostitution raised the age of consent to 16, yet his investigative journalism got him thrown in jail. A mass of contradictions and a crucial figure in the history of the British press, Stead remains a fascinating figure in his own time and ours.
At a time when the role of the press is under increased scrutiny, media history has never been more important. Stead was a pioneer, a ‘newspaper revolutionary’ as both the conference and the book asserted. He pushed the boundaries of both public taste and the media in his pursuit of the truth. This event, featuring two leading experts on Stead, considers his life and career and what they offer us, one 101 years later.