Government Propaganda Effects

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  • The term propaganda comes from the Congregatio de propaganda fide, or Congregation for the Propagation of Faith, established by the Catholic Church in 1622. The concept, however, is much older than the name. The dissemination of wartime propaganda dates back at least to Sun Tzu's The Art of War, written before the Common Era. It was not until World War I, however, that propaganda was used in a massive, highly organized fashion. Writing in the 1920s, Harold Lasswell defined propaganda as the control of opinion by significant symbols or, to speak more concretely and less accurately, by stories, rumors, reports, pictures, and other forms of social communication. A message may be considered to be propaganda only if it serves to benefit the generator of the ...

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