Explain the importance of public opinion in the period from 1763-1783. How was the revolutionary war era significantly influenced by mass media andcontinue: propaganda? whatsed public opinion to...

Explain the importance of public opinion in the period from 1763-1783. How was the revolutionary war era significantly influenced by mass media and

continue: propaganda? whatsed public opinion to gain people's support for independence? what events americans and british influenced public opinion of the time in a matter that aided the americans cause? give specific examples to support your answer.

Expert Answers
brettd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Public opinion leading up to and during the Revolutionary War was much more complicated than most people understand.  We were never united for independence, and a bare one third of people supported the war in the beginning, and actually, probably less than that.

In that kind of environment, and with so much at stake, shaping public opinion, whether through media or through propaganda, was crucial to the Revolutionary effort.  In this way, Britain was its own worst enemy.  They could not help acting like an empire and a monarchy, so when the crackdown on the colonies grew to violence in the streets (Boston, 1770) and to embargo against an entire colony (Massachusetts 1773), news and propaganda recruited supporters and support for the independence drive.  Without it, we would have stayed loyal, and the revolutionary army would have had no chance at success.

Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Public opinion was extremely important in mobilizing the war effort.  Mercy Otis Warren's plays were written to mock the British while Sam Adams' Committee of Correspondence sent letters and information spreading the word of rebellion to all of the colonists, creating a more unified approach to the war effort.  Pamphlets like Paine's "Common Sense" and Jefferson's "Declaration of Independence" could also be seen as propaganda to help drive home the point to all colonists that conflict for a higher notion of the political and social good would be needed.  Given the grass roots nature of the fight, the ability to spread the word through the printed media was critical and this propagandizing of the cause helped the war effort immensely.