This article examines the history of two Indian newspapers, Tanganyika Opinion and Tanganyika Herald, to demonstrate how business considerations provided both the opportunity for East African Indians to make public arguments and the central limitation on the arguments that could be made. Founded on the inspiration of mass nationalist action through a territorial hartal, the Tanganyika Opinion and later the Herald blazed the trails that articulated Greater India among the Anglo-Gujarati reading public in Tanganyika. But growing conservative sentiments within this vulnerable minority, along with rising sectarian division, reduced both the patronage and audience for a singular anti-colonial politics by the 1930s and 1940s. Moreover, as a marginal print node along the Indian Ocean littoral, the Opinion and Herald came to rely on an opportunistic mixture of wire services and consular propaganda to keep abreast of regional and international news developments. Ultimately, the shrinking market for Anglo-Gujarati newspapers and rising opportunities in Swahili-language journals had sealed the doom of these and similar Indian newspapers by the time African political independence arrived in the early 1960s.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)