(Book) Propaganda: The Formation of Men’s Attitude

by Jacques Ellul 

This is a book by the late French philosopher and anarchist Jacques Ellul. It explores the dynamics of information and how they affect our thinking, and action. I am of course reading this book in a political context but I believe those in marketing and those who are interested in leadership development can benefit from understanding how our brain interacts with ideas around us.

Propaganda: The Formation of Men’€™s Attitudes (note the masculine noun of the 60s) was Ellul’€™s attempt to analyze how political parties and corporations influence the reactions of the masses through propaganda techniques. In writing about propaganda, he was not condoning such acts, but were trying to deconstruct propaganda activities so that, his own words, “€œconfronted by a necessity, man must become aware of it, if he is to master it. As long as man denies the inevitability of a phenomenon, as long as he avoids facing up to it, he will go astray. He will delude himself, by submitting in fact to “necessity” while pretending that he is free ‘€œin spite of it’€, and simply because he claims to be free. Only when he realizes his delusion will he experiences the beginning of genuine freedom”€.

– Read more on Google Books

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