The Manipulative Nature of Propaganda

explanatory Essay
629 words
629 words

Though it may come as a surprise, many of your opinions on matters originated by means of propaganda. Propaganda is a means to manipulate an audience in believing information they want their audience to believe. In an effort to bring about the awareness of propaganda, writers George Orwell, Newman and Genevieve Birk, as well as D.W. Cross, explain the various ways in which a targeted audience may succumb to the manipulation of language and logic.
Newman and Genevieve Birk focus on the slanted information that we receive in our everyday lives. In fact, much of the information we read and hear slants towards audiences having a specific response (Birk and Birk). What take from that information is screened, slanted by selected facts, emphasis, charged words, and charged language. Before any information is interpreted into words, the principle of selection, also known as screening, occurs. Let us say that an individual experiences an event. Details that the individual remembers become a part of their knowledge, and is then screened and summarized into information found to be relevant. When words come from that knowledge, slanting occurs. Slanting means that certain facts from our knowledge base are chosen to emphasize the meaning we want others to understand by selecting particular facts, words, and emphasis (Birk and Birk). Factual slanting occurs when the facts told that are relevant to the effect you are trying to give, such as saying only positive attributes about a particular subject and hiding the possible negative attributes. Slanting with the use emphasis and charged words depend on the word choice and stress used on those words. For example, changing small words in a description, or changing the order of the words use...

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...n individual. Argumentum ad populum, also known as stroking, occurs when they tell the people say what will win your heart over. These words are meaningless and politicians use it to win votes in elections. It is important in elections to find out what the candidate is standing for, instead of them bribing your vote with compliments. Argumentum ad hominem is used in an attempt to make a personal attack to the people involved (Cross). We must avoid letting a stereotype cloud our judgment about a situation and instead base our beliefs on the values of the idea. The transfer of guilt or glory by association is when we associate a name with a specific person. With this device, we assume that since that person is associated with it, that they are wonderful or terrible based on their association.

Works Cited

How Not to Be Bamboozled - D.W. Cross

In this essay, the author

  • Explains how george orwell, newman and genevieve birk, as well as d.w. cross, explain the various ways in which a targeted audience succumb to the manipulation of language and logic.
  • Explains the principle of selection, or slanting, which involves selecting facts, emphasis, charged words, and charged language.
  • Explains the devices of trickery used by propaganda in an attempt to appeal to audiences, including name-calling, glittering generalities, plain folks appeal, argumentum ad populum, and bandwagon.
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