What is a Propaganda Poster? • A Propaganda Poster is usually created by an existing government or a political party trying to gain control of the government. • It uses patriotism and nationalism to glorify an idea or plan. • It is meant to convince the people to support the idea or plan. • It focuses either on the positives and ignores the negatives or focuses on the negatives and ignores the positives.
What is Propaganda? • Propaganda: what it means. • Propaganda is a specific type of message presentation aimed at serving a particular purpose. • It means to propagate (actively spread) a philosophy or point of view (which may be true but often is not). • The most common use of the term (historically) is in political contexts; in particular to refer to certain efforts sponsored by governments or political groups. • In most countries propaganda has negative connotations, but this is not universally true.
Propaganda Purpose • The aim of propaganda is to influence people's opinions actively, rather than to merely communicate the facts about something. • For example, propaganda might be used to gather either support or disapproval of a certain position, rather than to simply present the position. • What separates propaganda from "normal" communication is in the subtle, often insidious, ways that the message attempts to shape opinion. • For example, propaganda is often presented in a way that attempts to deliberately evoke a strong emotion, especially by suggesting non-logical (or non-intuitive)relationships between concepts.
Importance of teaching students the techniques of propaganda • The PBS election guide Web site “By The People” makes the following argument for why political advertisements should be looked at more carefully: • “The bottom line, then, is that it's important for citizens to look carefully at political ads. Certainly the truth or falsity and, regardless of ‘truth’, the deceptiveness of ad content is important to examine. Many newspapers and television analysis programs provide the citizen a good opportunity to learn more about the quality of the verbal content of political commercials. Although a majority of Americans are not aware of this, government closely controls the truth-value of national product advertising on television. But because of the principle of free speech, a principle protected by the U.S. Constitution, there is no control whatsoever on the content of a political commercial. Basically, a politician can say anything she or he wishes in a political ad. The only ‘control’ over content in a political ad is media and public response to that content.”
Features of Propaganda • There is a hidden motive which is not made obvious in all propaganda. • The methods used are generally insidious (wicked). • Propaganda are generally costly and carried out at a national scale. • When presenting the idea, there is always a bias. • Religious, national or political interests are usually sources of propaganda. • All forms of media and a lot of repetition are used to propagate the message. • The intention of propaganda is for the people to accept one idea and exclude any alternative ideas.
Guarding Against Propaganda • Always question what you see or hear no matter where or how you see it or who • says it. • Weigh ideas against everything you know and can find out. • Always look for a hidden motive. • Ask the person why he/she thinks that it is true and why.
Propaganda Strategies Adapted from the Propaganda Critic Web site. For more detailed definitions and additional examples see www.propagandacritic.com. PROPAGANDA – the use of a variety of communication techniques that create an emotional appeal to accept a particular belief or opinion, to adopt a certain behavior or to perform a particular action. There is some disagreement about whether all persuasive communication is propagandistic or whether the propaganda label can only be applied to dishonest messages. NAME CALLING – links a person, or idea, to a negative symbol. Examples: commie, fascist, yuppie GLITTERING GENERALITIES – use of virtue words; the opposite of name calling, i.e., links a person, or idea, to a positive symbol. Examples: democracy, patriotism, family
Name-Calling • This technique links a person or idea to a negative image. • It is hoped that association with this negative symbol will cause the viewer to reject it outright. • A derivative of this technique involves carefully selecting descriptive words. • Compare the connotations word determined and aggressive. • This is the opposite of glittering generalities.
Name-calling • A negative word or feeling is attached to an idea, product, or person. • If that word or feeling goes along with that person or idea, the implication is that we shouldn’t be interested in it.
For example: Do we want a mayor who will leave us in debt? Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 Spending grew 100% under Mayor Moneybags!
Name-Calling "The Jew: The inciter of war, the prolonger of war."
Glittering Generalities • Use of words and images that generally carry a favorable meaning to everyone; including liberty, democracy, freedom, and civilization • It hopes to associate a person, idea, or group with a positive feeling, but no direct evidence. • The largest problem with this technique is that all of these words mean different things to different people.
Glittering Generality • A commonly admired virtue is used to inspire positive feelings for a person, idea, or product. • Words like truth, democracy, beauty, timeless are examples of those general terms.
Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 Look on the bright side! Vote for Bill Brite ! For example: If you want to be brighter, you’ll support Bill Brite.
Glittering Generalities "Open the door to freedom! Put a strong man at the helm! Out of the swamp! Forward with the powers of renewal!”
Propaganda Strategies The next two are ways of making false connections: TRANSFER – a device by which the propagandist links the authority or prestige of something wellrespected and revered, such as church or nation, to something he would have us accept. Example: a political activist closes her speech with a prayer TESTIMONIAL – a public figure or a celebrity promotes or endorses a product, a policy, or a political candidate. Examples: an athlete appears on the Wheaties box; an actor speaks at a political rally
Transfer • Propagandists transfer the fame, prestige, or reliability of something or someone to an issue that may or may not be related. • Any politician who publicly says a prayer is transferring religion to their image. • Use of a flag or patriotic leader is also commonly utilized. • The Nazis justified treatment of the Jews by “proving” their inferiority through their own science.
Transfer • Symbols, quotes, or images of famous people are used to convey a message. • The message may not necessarily be associated with them.
Celebrate the American Way this 4th of July- Eat at Joe’s Joe’s Barbeque Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 For example: Joe uses symbols of America to tie his restaurant to American values for Independence Day.
Testimonial • A celebrity or expert who endorse a product, candidate, or idea. • Think about all of the commercials with celebrities. • The celebrity may not always be qualified to speak on the subject.
al Testimonials • If someone famous uses this product, believes this idea, or supports this candidate, so should we. • A famous person endorses an idea, a product, a candidate.
Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 Milly the Model asks, “Got Milk?” For example: If we drink milk we will all be as famous as Milly the model.
Appeal to Authority • Appeals to authority have important and powerful people supporting a candidate or idea. • Similar to testimonial.
Appeal to Authority "One People, One Reich, One Führer."
Propaganda Strategies The following three constitute special appeals: PLAIN FOLKS – attempt to convince the audience that a prominent person and his ideas are “of the people.” Examples: a prominent politician eats at McDonald’s; an actress is photographed shopping for groceries BANDWAGON – makes the appeal that “everyone else is doing it, and so should you.” Examples: an ad states that “everyone is rushing down to their Ford dealer” FEAR – plays on deep-seated fears; warns the audience that disaster will result if they do not follow a particular course of action. Example: an insurance company pamphlet includes pictures of houses destroyed floods, followed up by details about home-owners’ insurance.
Bandwagon • Hop on the bandwagon or else you don’t fit in. Everyone is doing it, so you should too. This technique is contrived peer pressure – no one wants to be left out or behind.
Bandwagon Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 • Everybody is doing this. • If you want to fit in, you need to “jump on the bandwagon” and do it too. • The implication is that you must JOIN in to FIT in.
Bank of the World Visa Card- You can use it from Tennessee to Timbuktu- anywhere you travel in whole wide world !! Sign up today at www.bowvisa.com Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 For example: If the whole world uses this VISA card, you must need one too.
Bandwagon • Everyone listens to the Fuhrer
Fear • During wartime this technique is used often. • It informs people that personal danger is imminent if they do or do not do some specific action.
Fear • Our fears are displayed. • Ideas, candidates, or products are shown to put our fears to rest.
Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 Guard against Identity theft Use Safety Ware www.safetyware.com For example: If you use Safety Ware it will people from stealing your identity-or will it?
Emotional words • We associate those words and, therefore, those positive feelings with the product. • Words that leave us with positive feelings are used to describe a product, person, or idea.
True Love Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 For example: What feelings are inspired by the words “true love”? If you wear this cologne will someone fall in love with you?
Propaganda Strategies The next two are types of logical fallacies: BAD LOGIC – an illogical message is not necessarily propagandistic; it can be just a logical mistake; it is propaganda if logic is manipulated deliberately to promote a cause. Example: Senator X wants to regulate the power industry. All Communist governments regulate their power industries. Senator X is a Communist. UNWARRANTED EXTRAPOLATION – making huge predictions about the future on the basis of a few small facts. Example: If the U.S. approves NAFTA, thousands of jobs and factories will move to Mexico.
Logical Fallacies • Drawing a conclusion from a series of premises. • For example: Religion is good. Wars are fought over religion. • Therefore, religious wars are good.
Faulty Reasoning • Factual supporting details are used though they do not support the conclusion. It works like this: • Christians believe in God. • Muslims believe in God. • Christians are Muslims.
More teachers recommend Calm-me to help them make it through the day Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 For example: Does this mean that teachers need medication to keep their cool during the school day ?
Euphemisms • The use of words or statements that deter from the meaning, to make it not as bad, and more tasteful to the general public. • The Nazis used the term resettlement to describe the mass murder of the Jews.
Plain Folks • This technique has a person or cause being associated with regular people. • Candidates who are just like you – they put their pants on one leg at a time too.
Plain-folks appeal • This idea, product, or person is associated with normal, everyday people and activities.
Clipart-Microsoft Office XP 2002 Vote for Smith For Example: We want a Jim Smith, a mayor who supports the regular American worker.
Plain Folks "We are for Adolf Hitler!"