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Media control : the Spectacular achievements of Propaganda

Noam Chomsky
01/01/1991

Chomsky's backpocket classic on wartime propaganda and opinion control has been updated and expanded into a two-section book, and redesigned following the acclaimed format of his Open Media anti-war bestseller, 9-11. The new edition of Media Control also includes 'The Journalist from Mars, ' Chomsky's 2002 talk on the media coverage of America's 'new war on terrorism.' Chomsky begins by asserting two models of democracy -- one in which the public actively participates, and one in which the public is manipulated and controlled. According to Chomsky 'propaganda is to democracy what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state, ' and the mass media is the primary vehicle for delivering propaganda in the United States. From an examination of how Woodrow Wilson's Creel Commission 'suceeded, within six months, in turning a pacifist population into a hysterical, war-mongering population, ' to Bush Sr.'s war on Iraq, Chomsky examines how the mass media and public relations industries have been used as propaganda to generate public support for going to war. Chomsky touches on how the modern public relations industry has been influenced by Walter Lippmann's theory of 'spectator democracy, ' in which the public is seen as a 'bewildered herd' that needs to be directed, not empowered; and how the public relations industry in the United States focuses on 'controlling the public mind, ' and not on informing it. Originally written in the immediate aftermath of the Gulf War, Media Control cites numerous examples of how Bush Sr. pushed the American population into supporting an attack on Iraq, a particularly relevant analysis today as Bush Jr. attempts to convince a reluctant population that we should again go to war.

Topic :  Propaganda  
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Format :    
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Edition :  Seven Stories Press  
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Country :  United States 
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Language  :  English 
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