The chapter first examines some key historical connections between media, communications and politics within the modern British Empire. It then suggests that print and literacy were powerful tools that indigenous and colonised groups could deploy in the face of imperial power. The chapter also demonstrates that thinking through paper and print is a very productive entry point for reassessing the work of empire, which was always 'unfinished business'. It further emphasises the importance of paper's materiality and portability, the deep political and cultural consequences of the intrinsically creative nature of reading and writing, and the ways in which these materials and skills were deployed in various ways against British imperial power. The chapter also shows that centrifugal forces were brought to bear on the empire by colonized peoples who embraced the political potential of pen and paper and harnessed the technologies of writing to challenge the inequities of the imperial order of things.