Propaganda & Mass Persuasion: Ellul's Total Propaganda

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Ellul's Total Propaganda

"Propaganda tries to surround man by all poossible routes, in the realm of feelings as well as ideas, by playing on his will or on his needs, through his conscious and his unconscious, assailing him in both his private and his public life...
Through the myth it creates, propaganda imposes a complete range of intuitive knowledge, susceptible of only one interpretation, unique and one-sided, and precluding any divergence. This myth becomes so powerful that it invades every area of consciousness, leaving no faculty or motivation intact (Lasswell. 7)."

Lasswell is expressing how propaganda must be TOTAL in order to be truly effective. It must totally draw in the objects of the propaganda campaign. Like brainwashing, the slate must be made clean and ideas and values are replaced by the propagandist. It is all about power and control, and the power must always be in the hands of the propagandist!


Blogger A. Mattson said...

A good quote. Next time indent the quote and leave your words big.

Total propaganda is an idea not a reality. It is something that a propagandist strives for in order to immerse the audience in an ocean of messages.

Be careful about using the term "brainwashing." What do you mean by that? Can the slate really be wiped clean? Even if one could 'brainwash' an indvidual could that be done with thousands? Millions? Ten?

2/12/2007 10:25 PM  

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