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Propaganda by Edward Bernays Impressions

Updated on March 20, 2011

By Phasmatis

Based on the 2005 Mark Miller Print

Finally I read the mystical tome that contained all the answers to propaganda or so we are told by so many but this isn’t exactly true. Like the new opening by Mark Miller the book is by and large a sales pitch for propaganda itself. Coming across as I describe it as one long blog post.

One would find this surprising by how much this book is talked about with such revere but there is little detail of methods in between the clutter of restatements sightings. Yet if one looks close enough and has the time to disseminate the many pages of this book such methods exist if only by mistake or for there being no other reason to explain the concept.

Yet mis-description and overhyping aside the book was good for what is was, a sales pitch on Propaganda. What is most miffing about the book though is the typos it contains and one gets the feeling on several occasions that the book has been abridged and thus you are not getting the whole picture.

This is not the best of books the constant repeating of the same concept (once 3 times in 2 paragraphs) wears thin really quickly and one would have to wonder if that in itself was a propaganda attempt by a master of propaganda.

Another area of contention I with the book is it is written from a socialist perspective and much of what he says while I’m sure he deeply believed is wrong or incorrect regarding individuals. In the typical socialist mindset he envisions people as rather mindless who follow their leaders even going so far as to even say ones will is not one’s own. This kind of logic really prevented Bernays from seeing his subject in its true light for he believed it was a way of directing the public but in reality it is a devise that exploits psychiatry and even then can’t control people as he himself said that the outcome is sometimes surprising and not what is expected.

In the end the book was written by a man who clearly loved and revered his field. This was a man who had a conscious and who would probably be disgusted with how his beloved propaganda is being misused today as he so objected in his book. If you are interested in reading a sales pitch on propaganda then this is your book, it is an honest evaluation if not repetitive, of the subject matter but if you are looking for the secrets of propaganda then turn around for there are few or none here.


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