Download Cakes and Ale by W. Somerset Maugham, Nicholas Shakespeare PDF

By W. Somerset Maugham, Nicholas Shakespeare

WITH AN advent by way of NICHOLAS SHAKESPEARE

Cakes and Ale is either a wickedly satirical novel approximately modern literary poseurs and a skilfully crafted examine of freedom. As he strains the fortunes of Edward Driffield and his amazing spouse Rosie, some of the most pleasant heroines of twentieth-century literature, Maugham's sardonic wit and lyrical heat expertly mix during this entire and unforgettable novel.

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Example text

One day later Bennett also began running stock prices, the first time that this had ever been done. There was a certain amount of complaint in the beginning, and some denizens of Wall Street thought that such a thing was an invasion of privacy. Within a matter of weeks, however, the complaints began to subside and New Yorkers started buying the paper for this reliable information that simply was not available elsewhere—even in the so-called "commercial" papers. Bennett's approach to business news was succinctly explained a few years later—after the paper had become a huge commercial success—in a notice that he inserted in the paper for a few weeks running: The spirit, pith and philosophy of commercial affairs is what men of business want.

This was probably the first scandalous trial in newspaper history—Bennett had made it such—and other papers were obliged to pick up the story or risk looking incompetent. The circulation of the Herald skyrocketed. The Sun was outpaced by the Herald, whose circulation now grew to 20,000. Bennett later insisted that he could easily have sold another 10,000 copies—or more—if his printer had had the capacity. By 1840 the Herald was clearly the circulation leader in New York, an achievement that did not sit well with other publishers.

They were mere conduits for the information (much of it unreliable) that was passed to them. This was just a kind of advertising, not journalism. Bennett knew something about business and economics (he had studied economics in Scotland and taught it after his arrival in North America), so now he personally began to prowl Wall Street in search of "real" news. As soon as he cleaned up the first work of the day in the office he would set out for the banks and brokerage houses. He spent a good part of the day in this pursuit so that within a very brief period people began to notice that the Herald had all kinds of business news that could not be found elsewhere.

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