F.C.Bartlett: Political Propaganda (1942)
University Pres | ISBN: ? | ASIN: B0006AP5R2 | 1942 | | 2nd edition | PDF (OCR) | 158 pages | 35 Mb
The basic aim of the book is a critique of the assumptions of totalitarian propaganda and the concomitant construction of principles which commit neither the fallacy of despising human intelligence–as do the totalitarians–nor of defying it–as do the heads-in-the-clouds idealists. To that end, Professor Bartlett inspects the evidence in favor of the view that man in the mass betrays a primitive, childlike intelligence, a sport of unconscious urges to be played upon by an elite versed in the secrets of human manipulation. The book, because of its limitations of space, is guilty of a superficial discussion of the history of propaganda and the limitations of various propaganda media. To the reviewer it seems that this section might have been left out in favor of further discussion of propaganda strategy. Another fault is the lack, obvious by its absence, of consideration of the relation of propaganda to the context of events on which it takes place. The most fitting comment the reviewer can make, however, is that Professor Bartlett has crammed into the pages of his slim volume an imposing array of provocative insights, shrewd conclusions, and arresting hypotheses–many of which have stood the test of recent history.