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Propaganda & Persuasion

Propaganda & Persuasion

Eighth Edition

August 2024 | 480 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Propaganda and Persuasion, Eighth Edition offers a comprehensive history of propaganda along with an introduction to the tools and concepts used to analyze it. New author Nancy Snow ushers in fresh perspectives, experience, and insight as one of the foremost scholars in the field of propaganda studies to further augment the ideas, concepts, and analytical framework introduced by original authors Garth Jowett and Victoria O'Donnell. Ideal for courses in Persuasion, Propaganda, or Political Communication, this book draws on examples from ancient times to present day issues such as the impact of social media to help students recognize, understand, and analyze the instances of propaganda and persuasion they encounter in an increasingly complex and digitalized world.  

Chapter 1: What Is Propaganda, and How Does It Differ From Persuasion?
Propaganda Defined

Jowett and O’Donnell’s Definition of Propaganda

Forms of Propaganda

Subpropaganda/Facilitative Communication

Chapter 2: A Model of Propaganda
Communication Defined

Propaganda and Information

Propaganda and Persuasion

Persuasion Defined

Persuasion Is Transactional

Responses to Persuasion





Group Norms


Persuasion Seeks Voluntary Change

Misleading and Manipulating an Audience

Rhetorical Background and the Ethics of Persuasion

Rhetoric and Propaganda

Propaganda as a Form of Communication

Concealed Purpose

Concealed Identity

Control of Information Flow

The Management of Public Opinion

The Manipulation of Behavior

The Demagogue/Propagandist

Overview of the Book

Chapter 3: Propaganda Through the Ages
Ancient Greece and Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great

Imperial Rome

Propaganda and Religion

The Rise of Christianity

The Crusades

The Reformation and Counter-Reformation

The Counter-Reformation

The Emergence of Propaganda

The American Revolution

The French Revolution and Napoleon

Propaganda in the 19th Century: The American Civil War

Chapter 4: Propaganda Institutionalized
The New Audience

The Emergence of Mass Society

The Emergence of the Propaganda Critique

The New Media

Print Media


Oliver Stone’s Untold History of the United States`

Hollywood and Washington Nexus

Michael Moore and Fahrenheit 9/11



Current International Radio Propaganda

U.S. Government International Broadcasting

Radio and TV Marti


The Nature of Television

Television as Propaganda

The Emergence of Cable News

Advertising: The Ubiquitous Propaganda

Institutional Propaganda

Digital Advertising

The Science of Advertising

The Role of Advertising in Persuasion Digital Propaganda Threats: Intentional Mischief and Malice

Chapter 5: Propaganda and Persuasion Examined
The Modern Study of Propaganda and Persuasion

Propaganda in World War I

The Aftermath of World War I and the Growing Concern About Propaganda

The Social Sciences and the Study of Propaganda

Research in Propaganda and Persuasion

The Study of Attitudes

World War II and Research in Communication

The Yale Studies

Consistency Theories

Theory of Exposure Learning

Social Judgment Theory

Resistance to Persuasion

McGuire’s Model of Persuasion

Diffusion of Innovations

Recent Research on Attitudes

Research on Persuasion and Behavior

The Influence of the Media

Violence and the Media

Cultivation Studies

Prosocial Behaviors and Television

The Agenda-Setting Function of the Media

Uses and Gratifications Theory

Uses and Dependency Theory

The Internet and Digital Innovations

Limitations of Effects Research

Cultural Studies

Collective Memory Studies


Generalizations About Propaganda and Persuasion Effects

Chapter 6: Propaganda and Psychological Warfare
World War I and the Fear of Propaganda

British Propaganda

German Propaganda

American Propaganda

Atrocity Propaganda

Reaction to World War I Propaganda

The Interwar Years, 1920 to 1939

The Emergence of Communist Propaganda

American Isolationism

Huey Pierce Long Jr.

Fr. Charles Coughlin, SJ

The Institute for Propaganda Analysis

Hitler and Nazi Propaganda

World War II

Post–World War II Conflicts

The Korean War, 1950 to 1953

The Korean War and the “Brainwashing” Issue

The Vietnam War

The Gulf of Tonkin Incident

“Hearts and Minds”: The Propaganda Campaign

The War

The Media

The 1991 Gulf War: Mobilization of World Public Opinion

Using Metaphor and Imagery in the Gulf War

The “Nayirah” Incident

The Aftermath (2005): The Invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq

A Modern World of Propaganda

International Sports

2020 Summer Olympics

Freedom of Speech and New Technologies

The Patriot Act


Negative Counterpropaganda

Chapter 7: How to Analyze Propaganda
The Ideology and Purpose of the Propaganda Campaign

The Context in Which the Propaganda Occurs

Identification of the Propagandist

The Structure of the Propaganda Organization

The Target Audience

Media Utilization Techniques

Special Techniques to Maximize Effect

Predispositions of the Audience: Creating Resonance

Source Credibility

Opinion Leaders

Face-to-Face Contact

Group Norms

Reward and Punishment

Monopoly of the Communication Source

Visual Symbols of Power

Political Visuals

Architectural Visuals

Language Usage

Music as Propaganda

Arousal of Emotions

Audience Reaction to Various Techniques


Effects and Evaluation

Chapter 8: Propaganda in Action: Four Case Studies
Case Study 1: Women and War: Work, Housing, and Childcare

The Context, Ideology, and Purpose of the Propaganda Campaign

Identification of the Propagandist and the Structure of the Propaganda Organization

The Target Audience

Media Utilization Techniques

Special Techniques to Maximize Effect

Audience Reaction to Various Techniques

Effects and Evaluation

Case Study 2: Propaganda and Climate Change

The Context, Ideology, and Purpose of the Propaganda Campaign

Identification of the Propagandist and Structure of the Propaganda Organization

The Target Audience

Propaganda Techniques


Effects and Evaluation

Case Study 3: Big Pharma: Marketing Disease and Drugs

Ideology and Purpose of the Propaganda Campaign

The Context in Which the Propaganda Occurs: The Medicalization of Society

Identification of the Propagandist and Structure of the Organizations

The Target Audience

Media Utilization Techniques

Special Techniques to Maximize Effects

Television Advertising

“Me-Too” Drugs

Generic Drugs

Clinical Trials

Ghostwritten Articles in Medical Journals

Pharmaceutical Sales Representatives

Opinion Leaders



Targeting the News Media

Audience Reaction to Various Techniques

The Opioid Crisis


Effects and Evaluation

Case Study 4: Pentagon Propaganda

The Propagandists

The Audience

The Various Techniques Employed


The Consequences


Chapter 9: How Propaganda Works in Modern Society
A Model of the Process of Propaganda

Social-Historical Context

The Process of Propaganda

The Institution

Propaganda Agents

Media Methods

The Social Network

The Public


Appendix 1 Confessions of a Hollywood Propagandist
Appendix 2 Jazz Ambassador Dizzy Gillespie
Author Index
Subject Index
About the Authors

For instructors