The SAGE Handbook of Propaganda
Publication Year: 2020
The SAGE Handbook of Propaganda unpacks the ever-present and exciting topic of propaganda to explain how it invades the human psyche, in what ways it does so, and in what contexts. As a beguiling tool of political persuasion in times of war, peace, and uncertainty, propaganda incites people to take, often violent, action, consciously or unconsciously. This pervasive influence is particularly prevalent in world politics and international relations today. In this interdisciplinary Handbook, the editors have gathered together a group of world-class scholars from Europe, America, Asia, and the Middle East, to discuss leadership propaganda, war propaganda, propaganda for peace marketing, propaganda as a psychological tool, terror-enhanced propaganda, and the contemporary topics of internet-mediated propaganda. Unlike previous publications on the subject, this book brings to ...
- Front Matter
- Subject Index
- Concepts, Precepts and Techniques in Propaganda Research
- Chapter 1: Propaganda of the Deed and Its Anarchist Origins
- Chapter 2: Atrocity Propaganda in Australia and Great Britain During the First World War
- Chapter 3: Strategic Narratives and War Propaganda
- Chapter 4: From Disinformation to Fake News: Forwards into the Past
- Chapter 5: Post-Truth and the Changing Information Environment
- Chapter 6: The Audience is the Amplifier: Participatory Propaganda
- Chapter 7: Computational Propaganda and the Rise of the Fake Audience
- Chapter 8: Visual Propaganda and Social Media
- Chapter 9: Public Relations and Corporate Propaganda
- Methodological Approaches in Propaganda Research
- Chapter 10: Rhetorical Methods and Metaphor in Viral Propaganda
- Chapter 11: Content Analysis and the Examination of Digital Propaganda on Social Media
- Chapter 12: Character Assassination as Modus Operandi of Soviet Propaganda
- Chapter 13: Assessing Propaganda Effectiveness in North Korea: A Limited Access Case Study
- Chapter 14: Towards the Measurement of Islamist Propaganda Effectiveness: A Marketing Perspective
- Tools and Techniques in Counter-Propaganda research
- Chapter 15: Propaganda and Disinformation: How a Historical Perspective Aids Critical Response Development
- Chapter 16: Atrocities, Investigations and Propaganda: Lessons from World War I
- Chapter 17: Countering Hamas and Hezbollah Propaganda
- Chapter 18: Defending against Russian Propaganda
- Chapter 19: Fighting and Framing Fake News
- Chapter 20: Measuring the Unmeasurable: Evaluating the Effectiveness of US Strategic Counterterrorism Communications
- Chapter 21: Countering the Fear in Propaganda
- Chapter 22: Peace Marketing as Counter Propaganda? Towards a Methodology
- Propaganda in Context
- Chapter 23: Propaganda and Information Operations in Southeast Asia: Constructing Colonialism and Its Antithesis, Statehood and Peaceful Ambiguity
- Chapter 24: The Construction of the Chinese Dream
- Chapter 25: Darkness and Light: Media, Propaganda, and Politics in Japan
- Chapter 26: Syria: Propaganda as a Tool in the Arsenal of Information Warfare
- Chapter 27: Cold War Propaganda in Civil War Greece, 1946–1949: From State of Emergency to Normalization
- Chapter 28: Propaganda and Populist Communication in Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela
- Chapter 29: Evaluating Putin's Propaganda Performance 2000–2018: Stagecraft as Statecraft
- Chapter 30: Trumpaganda: The War on Facts, Press, and Democracy
- Chapter 31: LeaveEU: Dark Money, Dark Ads and Data Crimes
- Chapter 32: ISIS Female Recruits: The Alluring Propaganda Promises
- Chapter 33: IS's Strategic Communication Tactics
- Chapter 34: The Evolution of Terrorist Propaganda in Cyberspace
SAGE Publications Ltd
1 Oliver's Yard
55 City Road
London EC1Y 1SP
SAGE Publications Inc.
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, California 91320
SAGE Publications India Pvt Ltd
B 1/I 1 Mohan Cooperative Industrial Area
New Delhi 110 044
SAGE Publications Asia-Pacific Pte Ltd
3 Church Street
#10-04 Samsung Hub
Editor: Matthew Waters
Editorial Assistant: Colette Wilson
Production Editor: Jessica Masih
Copyeditor: Sarah Bury
Proofreader: Richard Davis
Indexer: Elske Janssen
Marketing Manager: Lucia Sweet
Cover Design: Bhairvi Gudka
Typeset by Cenveo Publisher Services
Printed in the UK
At SAGE we take sustainability seriously. Most of our products are printed in the UK using responsibly sourced papers and boards. When we print overseas we ensure sustainable papers are used as measured by the PREPS grading system. We undertake an annual audit to monitor our sustainability.
Chapter 1 © Neville Bolt, 2020
Chapter 2 © Emily Robertson, 2020
Chapter 3 © Thomas Colley, 2020
Chapter 4 © Nicholas O'Shaughnessy, 2020
Chapter 5 © Ignas Kalpokas, 2020
Chapter 6 © Alicia Wanless & Michael Berk, 2020
Chapter 7 © Aaron Delwiche, 2020
Chapter 8 © Hyunjin Seo, 2020
Chapter 9 © Jordi Xifra, 2020
Chapter 10 © Chris Miles, 2020
Chapter 11 © Darren Lilleker & Pawel Surowiec, 2020
Chapter 12 © Sergei A. Samoilenko & Margarita Karnysheva, 2020
Chapter 13 © Efe Sevin, Kadir Jun Ayhan, Won Yong Jang & Hyelim Lee, 2020
Chapter 14 © Paul Baines & Nicholas O'Shaughnessy, 2020
Chapter 15 © Gill Bennett, 2020
Chapter 16 © Ewan Lawson, 2020
Chapter 17 © Ron Schleifer, 2020
Chapter 18 © Christopher Paul & Miriam Matthews, 2020
Chapter 19 © Maria Haigh & Thomas Haigh, 2020
Chapter 20 © Alberto M. Fernandez, 2020
Chapter 21 © Paul Baines & Nigel Jones, 2020
Chapter 22 © Dianne Dean & Haseeb Shabbir, 2020
Chapter 23 © Alan Chong, 2020
Chapter 24 © Chung-Min Tsai, 2020
Chapter 25 © Nancy Snow, 2020
Chapter 26 © Greg Simons, 2020
Chapter 27 © Zinovia Lialiouti, 2020
Chapter 28 © Daniel Aguirre & Caroline Ávila, 2020
Chapter 29 © Tina Burrett, 2020
Chapter 30 © Mira Sotirovic, 2020
Chapter 31 © Emma L. Briant, 2020
Chapter 32 © Louisa Tarras-Wahlberg, 2020
Chapter 33 © Charlie Winter & Craig Whiteside, 2020
Chapter 34 © Gabriel Weimann, 2020
Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of research or private study, or criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, this publication may be reproduced, stored or transmitted in any form, or by any means, only with the prior permission in writing of the publishers, or in the case of reprographic reproduction, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by the Copyright Licensing Agency. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside those terms should be sent to the publishers.
Library of Congress Control Number: 2019939408
British Library Cataloguing in Publication data
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
This Handbook is dedicated to those who have needlessly lost their lives in terrorist attacks throughout the world.
List of Figures and Tables[Page x][Page xi]List of Figures
[Page xii]List of Tables
- 0.1 Word Cloud Outlining The Main Foci of the Handbook xxxvii
- 2.1 Edmund J. Sullivan (1915), ‘The Gentleman German’, The Kaiser's Garland, London: William Heinemann 30
- 2.2 Norman Lindsay, ‘Onward, Christian Soldiers’, 1 July 1915, The Bulletin 31
- 6.1 Total number of page followers, as of 6 June 2018 96
- 6.2 Follower engagement on page, 7 May to 6 June 2018 97
- 6.3 Shares: support + real + political 98
- 6.4 Comments: support + real + political 98
- 6.5 Message amplification 99
- 8.1 An image posted to the Syrian President's Facebook page 131
- 8.2 An image posted to the Syrian National Coalition Facebook page 132
- 14.1 A rich picture of the terrorist propaganda effectiveness measurement space 225
- 14.2 The Extended Parallel Response Model 229
- 14.3 Stages of terrorist recruitment with associated social media metrics 233
- 19.1 Wardle's (2017) taxonomy of ‘7 types of mis- and dis-information’ is centered on the intent of the creator of fake news, which may be challenging to determine 304
- 19.2 This satirical bingo card, produced by StopFake, summarizes the most common fake news and biased media tropes used against Ukraine around 2017 310
- 22.1 Marketing & Propaganda (Dis)similarities. 357
- 22.2 Replication and counter branding strategies. 362
- 27.1 The front-cover of the edition: Rodocanachi, C. P. (1949), A Great work of civic readaptation in Greece, Athens, 1949 465
- 27.2 Photo from the visit of the Royal Couple to Makronissos, published by the newspaper Kairoi, 4 March 24, 1949 465
- 27.3 Kairoi frontpage, March 20, 1949 469
- 27.4 Snapshot from “Agricultural day” published at Kairoi, 22/3/1949 471
- 28.1 Time-series press-freedom rank in South America 485
- 29.1 Putin Approval and Disapproval Ratings September 2013-September 2014 (%) 498
- 29.2 Is the Rise of China a Threat to Russia's Interests? 502
- 31.1 Taken in the Goddard–Gunster Boardroom, ‘Celebration of the 45th Presidential Inauguration with Nigel Farage’ event was ‘Sponsored by LeaveEU’ 538
- 31.2 Graph showing VL Daily Total Facebook Ad Impressions 541
- 32.1 Push and Pull Factors Towards Radicalisation 554
- 0.1 Some of the Key Themes Covered in this Handbook xxxviii
- 6.1 Measuring the second information wave 98
- 11.1 Uses of content analysis in political communication research 173
- 11.2 Overview of major content analysis research of propaganda on social media platforms 175
- 14.1 Aims, narratives, lines of persuasion and dissemination used by four main Islamist terrorist groups 241
- 20.1 Growth of DOT Arabic language YouTube videos 326
- 20.2 Total views of DOT Arabic language YouTube videos 326
- 20.3 DOT Arabic video production/views on YouTube, 2011–2017 329
- 26.1 Article sample 449
- 28.1 A Populist Communication Framework for Comparative Propaganda Analysis 482
- 29.1 Putin's Propaganda Operations in 2000 and 2018 Compared 494
- 30.1 People and things Trump insulted on Twitter more than 10 times 518
- 30.2 Topics of Trump's false and misleading claims 519
- 30.3 Sources of Trump's false or misleading claims 520
Notes on the Editors and Contributors[Page xiii]The Editors
Paul Baines is Professor of Political Marketing and Associate Dean (business and civic engagement) at the University of Leicester. He is a Visiting Professor at Cranfield University and an Associate Fellow at King's College London. He is the author/co-author of more than a hundred published articles, book chapters and books on political marketing issues. Over the last 20 years, Paul's research has focused on political marketing, public opinion and propaganda. He has published in, inter alia, the Journal of Business Research, Journal of the American Statistical Association, European Journal of Marketing and Psychology & Marketing. His current and recent research work includes grant funding for a project to evaluate the effectiveness of police social marketing/counter-terrorism communications (i to i research/Department for Transport) and a project to explore the effectiveness of guilt-elicitation in marketing communications (British Academy). He is a Fellow of the Market Research Society and the Institute of Directors (IOD). Paul's most recent book is Marketing 5E (Oxford University Press, 2019) with Chris Fill, Sara Rosengren and Paolo Antonetti. Paul's marketing research/strategy consultancy includes experience working with numerous government departments on strategic communication research projects as well as small, medium and large private enterprises including IBM, 3M, Saint Gobain Glassolutions, Fulham Football Club and many others over the years. He is a non-executive director of the Business Continuity Institute and operates his own strategic marketing and market research consultancy, Baines Associates Limited.
Nicholas O'Shaughnessy is Professor of Communication in the School of Business and Management at Queen Mary, University of London, Visiting Professor at King's College, London and a Quondam Fellow of Hughes Hall, Cambridge University. He is the author and co-author of numerous journal articles, edited chapters and books on marketing and political communication, including The Phenomenon of Political Marketing (Macmillan /St. Martin's Press, 1990), Persuasion in Advertising (Routledge, 2003, co-author), The Marketing Power of Emotion (Oxford, 2003, co-author), Propaganda and Politics: Weapons of Mass Seduction (Manchester, MI, 2004), Propaganda (four volumes, Sage, 2012, co-editor), Theory and Concepts in Political Marketing (Sage, 2013, co-author), Selling Hitler: Propaganda and the Nazi Brand (Hurst, 2016) and Marketing the Third Reich: Persuasion, Packaging and Propaganda (Routledge, 2017). He is on the editorial board of various journals and is a Senior Editor of the Journal of Political Marketing.
Nancy Snow has been a Japan observer since the Prime Minister's Office sponsored her first trip in 1993 as a US Information Agency official. Since 2015, she has spent most of her time in Japan, where she teaches as the country's only titled professor of public diplomacy. Her chapter (Chapter 25) is based in part on her Social Science Research Council Abe Fellowship, a research project in which she interviewed well over one hundred Japan observers, including foreign correspondents and foreign professors, as well as Japanese leaders in university and [Page xiv]government. The chapter explains the landscape of Japan's media and propaganda environment through a series of situations and events that are challenging Japan's ability to successfully manage global information in the run-up to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.The Contributors
Daniel Aguirre is a member of the Faculty of Communications, Universidad del Desarrollo in Santiago, Chile. He holds a Master of Arts in International Studies and is a PhD Candidate in Communication at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. His research focuses on international political communication, publishing on topics related to public diplomacy and comparative political communication. He has also co-edited a book volume on digital diplomacy in the Americas and Spain, and published on public diplomacy in scientific journals. He is an active member of the International Studies Association within the sections of International Communication, Diplomatic Studies and the Global South Caucus.
Caroline Avila is a professor at Universidad del Azuay, Ecuador. She holds a PhD in Communication from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Her work is related to the field of political communication, specifically studying the role of government communication in a Latin American context such as populism. Her research analyses topics such as populist communication, government myth, media relations and communication policies. Part of her work has been published in scientific journals, and she has collaborated on several book chapters. She has presented at academic congresses in Prague, Montreal, Fukuoka, London and Cartagena, among others. She is a member of the International Communication Association and the International Association for Media and Communication Research.
Kadir Jun Ayhan is a professor at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies Graduate School of International and Area Studies. Ayhan's main research interests include public diplomacy, power and status in world politics, active learning pedagogy for international studies and Korean foreign policy. Kadir Jun Ayhan has been a member of Public Diplomacy Scholars Group (later renamed Dol Dahm Club) within Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) since 2013. Ayhan's work have been published in several academic journals and edited volumes including International Studies Perspectives, Korea Observer and Journal of Contemporary Eastern Asia.
Gill Bennett , MA, OBE, FRHistS was Chief Historian of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office from 1995 to 2005, and Senior Editor of the UK's official history of British foreign policy, Documents on British Policy Overseas. Since then she has been involved in a number of research and writing projects both within Whitehall and more widely. Gill is a Senior Associate Fellow of the Royal United Services Institute. Her publications include Churchill's Man of Mystery: Desmond Morton and the World of Intelligence (Routledge, 2006), Six Moments of Crisis: Inside British Foreign Policy (Oxford University Press, 2013) and The Zinoviev Letter: The Conspiracy That Never Dies (Oxford University Press, 2018). She is currently working on the history of counter-disinformation.
Michael Berk is a Visiting Fellow with the Center for Cyber Security and International Relations, University of Florence, and Principal at Alton Corporation. Building on his career in defence and security, he studies cyber and information threats and their effects on government [Page xv]decision-making and group behaviours. Since 2014, he combines consulting, academic research and policy work on information security topics to acquire a multidisciplinary and cross-industry perspective on best practices allowing states to address emerging national security challenges online. His recent projects included managing an international capacity building program on ICT/cyber policy development in FSU countries, work with the OSCE on enhancing CBMs in cyberspace, contribution to the development of a strategic communications doctrine, and analysis of the Ukrainian information environment during the 2019 elections cycle, among others.
Neville Bolt is the Director of the King's Centre for Strategic Communications, and Reader in Strategic Communications at King's College London where he convenes the Masters programme in Strategic Communications. He is Editor-in-Chief of NATO's academic journal Defence Strategic Communications, and Chief Academic Advisor to NATO's Terminology Working Group (Riga). Formerly a television journalist-producer specialising in war zone coverage, and communications strategist for the UK Labour Party and African National Congress (ANC), he now advises governments on responses to political and geopolitical threats. His book The Violent Image: Insurgent Propaganda and the New Revolutionaries (Columbia University Press, 2012) proposed a new theory of the Propaganda of the Deed: it received the CHOICE ‘outstanding academic status award’. He was the Teaching Excellence Award Winner 2017 at King's College London.
Emma L. Briant is Associate Researcher at Bard College and specializes in researching and publishing in political communication and propaganda studies. She is most interested in the rapid evolution of contemporary propaganda and its implications for democracy, security, inequality and human rights. Dr Briant analyzed the coordination and increasing impacts of the digitalization of defense propaganda for her book Propaganda and Counter-Terrorism: Strategies for Global Change (Manchester University Press, 2015). She spent 11 years researching SCL Group and Cambridge Analytica and was central in revealing their wrongdoing in 2018 – this research formed the basis for important evidence submitted to the UK Parliament and the Senate Judiciary Committee among other public inquiries. She is now consolidating her recent research–which straddles her interests in politics, security and the reproduction of inequality–into a book project: Propaganda Machine: Inside Cambridge Analytica and the Digital Influence Industry. Dr Briant is also working on a long term co-authored book project with Professor Robert M Entman: What's Wrong with the Democrats? Media Bias, Inequality and the rise of Donald Trump. Her first book was Bad News for Refugees, (Pluto Press, 2013, co-authored with Greg Philo and Pauline Donald) examined UK political and media discourse on migration prior to ‘Brexit’, and its impact on migrants and UK communities.
Tina Burrett is Associate Professor of Political Science at the Faculty of Liberal Arts, Sophia University, Japan. Her recent publications include Press Freedom in Contemporary Asia (co-edited with Jeff Kingston) (Routledge 2019), “Russian State Television Coverage of the 2016 US Presidential Election”, Demokratizatsiya: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization 2018, “Mixed Signals: Democratisation and the Myanmar Media”, Politics and Governance, 2017. She is author of Television and Presidential Power in Putin's Russia, (Routledge 2013).
Alan Chong is Associate Professor at the Centre for Multilateralism Studies, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore. He has published widely on the notion of soft power and the role of ideas in constructing the international relations of Singapore and Asia. [Page xvi]These ideational angles have also led to inquiry into some aspects of ‘non-traditional security’ issues in Asia. His publications have appeared in The Pacific Review, International Relations of the Asia-Pacific; Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, Asian Survey, East Asia: An International Quarterly, Politics, Religion and Ideology, the Review of International Studies, the Cambridge Review of International Affairs, Armed Forces and Society, the Journal of Strategic Studies, Global Change, Peace and Security, the Asian Journal of Comparative Politics, Asian Journal of Comparative Politics and the Japanese Journal of Political Science. He is also the author of Foreign Policy in Global Information Space: Actualizing Soft Power (Palgrave, 2007) and co-editor (with Faizal bin Yahya) of State, Society and Information Technology in Asia (Ashgate/Routledge, 2014/15). He is currently working on several projects exploring the notion of ‘Asian international theory’. His interest in soft power has also led to inquiry into the sociological and philosophical foundations of international communication. In tandem, he has pursued a fledgling interest in researching cyber security issues and international discursive conflicts. He has frequently been interviewed in the Asian media and consulted by think-tank networks in the region.
Thomas Colley is a Teaching Fellow in the Department of War Studies, King's College London, and a Fellow of the King's Centre for Strategic Communications. His research interests include propaganda, strategic communications and their historical and contemporary use in war. His recent research has examined strategic narratives from the perspectives of ordinary citizens, focusing on the British public's understanding of war.
Dianne Dean is a Reader at Sheffield Business School, Sheffield Hallam University. She has published extensively in leading journals including European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Business Research and the Journal of Marketing Management. She specialises in Political Marketing with a focus on propaganda and persuasion.
Aaron Delwiche (Ph.D. University of Washington) is a Professor in the Department of Communication at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. He teaches courses on topics such as game development, transmedia storytelling and political propaganda. In 2018, with support from the Mellon Foundation, Aaron overhauled the 25-year-old site “https://propagandacritic.com/”Propaganda Critic, adding nearly two dozen articles exploring the emergence of computational propaganda, explaining common propaganda techniques, and teaching users how to identify bots, trolls, and sockpuppets in online spaces. The co-editor of the Participatory Cultures Handbook (2012), Aaron's recent work includes a chapter about the history of computer bulletin board systems in the Sage Handbook of Social Media (2018), an article about teaching game programming to liberal arts students in Coding Pedagogy (2019), a co-authored chapter about Propaganda Critic for Project Censored 2020, and a co-authored chapter identifying how media literacy educators can respond to the threat of computational propaganda in the forthcoming Routledge anthology Media Literacy in a Disruptive Environment.
Alberto M. Fernandez is President of Middle East Broadcasting Networks (MBN), which oversees all U.S. funded broadcasting in Arabic. A career foreign service officer for more than three decades, Ambassador Fernandez served as the U.S. State Department's Coordinator for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications from 2012 to 2015, retiring from the State Department in May 2015. He also served in senior diplomatic positions in the U.S. embassies in Sudan, Afghanistan, Jordan, Syria, Kuwait, and in the State Department's Bureau of Near East and North African Affairs (NEA). After his retirement from government service, he was Vice-President of MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute (2015 to 2017) in Washington, [Page xvii]D.C. and is a member of the board of directors of George Washington University's Center for Cyber and Homeland Security and Non-Resident Fellow in Middle East Politics and Media at TRENDS Research Foundation in Abu Dhabi.
Maria Haigh is an Associate professor in the School of Information at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and Comenius Visiting Professor at the Siegen University iSchool. Maria Haigh holds a degree in cybernetics from Shevchenko National University in Kiev Ukraine and PhD in Information Systems and Scholarly Communications from Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, USA. Maria studies information practices, policies, and institutions in the former Soviet bloc. She has published multiple articles about online file-sharing practices in the post Soviet world and their relationship to cultural constructions of copyright. In addition, her research explores the social construction of Ukrainian libraries and library education, and their co-evolution with Ukrainian national identity. Maria's current research focuses on methods of disinformation and media literacy programs in Ukraine.
Thomas Haigh is a Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and Comenius Visiting Professor in the History of Computing at Siegen University. He is the primary author of ENIAC In Action (MIT, 2016) and the editor of Histories of Computing (Harvard, 2011) and Exploring the Early Digital (Springer, 2019). His interest in fake news is an extension of his work on Internet history, which included coediting a special issue of Information & Culture, serving on the editorial board of Internet Histories, and making network history a major theme in the new version of A History of Modern Computing he is writing with Paul Ceruzzi (MIT, forthcoming).
Won Yong Jang is Professor of Integrated Strategic Communication at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire. His writings about communications have appeared in Communication Theory, Journal of International Communication, Handbook of International and Intercultural Communication, International Communication Gazette, Media International Australia, and Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, among other. His current research interests include global communication issues, relationships between media and society in East Asian societies, health Communication across borders, and political communication. He teaches courses on research methodology, strategic communication, international communication, and media law.
Nigel Jones specialises in the cultural and social aspects of security, strategy and international relations, having an extensive practitioner, business and academic background. He is particularly interested in the interplay of social and technological factors in real world communications, security and risk challenges. He is CEO of the Information Assurance Advisory Council, which has a mission to advance Information Assurance (IA) and cyber security to ensure that the UK's Information Society has a robust, resilient and secure foundation. He also consults and researches on social and cultural issues affecting leadership. He is a visiting fellow at King's College London Department of Defence Studies.
Ignas Kalpokas is Associate Professor at Vytautas Magnus University and Assistant Profesor at LCC International University. He holds a PhD in Politics from the University of Nottingham and his main research areas include (1) identity formation though political communication, particularly focusing on post-truth; (2) algorithmic governance of political life, particularly of political emotions; (3) more broadly, tensions between the constituent and the constituted powers in modern democracies. He is the author of Creativity and Limitation in Political Communities (Routledge, 2018) and A Political Theory of Post-Truth (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019).[Page xviii]
Margarita Karnysheva received her BA and MA degrees in History of Japan from Saint-Petersburg University, Russia and her PhD in History of Japan and Soviet Military History from University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS, USA. She is currently involved in a research project in Russian museums that deals with memories of the Russian Civil War and the World War II. In addition, she is co-authoring a book on the legacy of the anti-Soviet White movement in contemporary Russia. Her professional interest focuses on the Soviet military history, Soviet-Japanese and Soviet-American relations, Soviet propaganda, Russian nationalism, and memory studies.
Ewan Lawson is a former officer in the British military with experience of information warfare. He is now a Senior Research Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute and a Senior Teaching Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies at London University where he researches and teaches on contemporary international security issues.
Hyelim Lee is a doctoral student in Seoul National University, South Korea. Her main research interests are Public Diplomacy, Political Strategic Communication and Gender & Media. She has written and published several policy papers, journal articles and book chapters. She is currently working on her doctoral dissertation discussing a relationship between network effects of social media and the citizens’ political engagement.
Zinovia Lialiouti is assistant professor of Modern and Contemporary European History, in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. She has collaborated as a researcher with the Academy of Athens, the UCD Clinton Institute for American Studies and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She is the author of the books: Anti-Americanism in Greece 1947–1989, (Asini Publishing, Athens 2016) (in Greek) and The ‘Other’ Cold War. American Cultural Diplomacy in Greece 1953–1973, University Press of Crete, Rethymnon 2019 (in Greek). She has published several papers in peer-review journal and edited volumes on Greek political history, the Cold War ideology and culture, and the study of political discourse and national identities
Darren G. Lilleker is Associate Professor in Political Communication in The Faculty of Media & Communication, Bournemouth University and is Head of the Corporate and Marketing Communication Academic Department. He is Convenor of the Centre for Politics & Media Research and teaches across the BA Politics, MA International Political Communication and MA Political Psychology programmes; and visiting professor at the University of Zagreb, Croatia. Dr Lilleker's expertise is in the intersecting areas of political campaigning and public engagement in politics, and in particular how public engagement can be potentiated and facilitated using innovations facilitated by digital technological developments. He has worked with the UK House of Lords as well as local communication agencies, political parties and pressure groups. Dr Lilleker has published widely on the professionalisation and marketisation of political communication and its societal impacts including Political Communication and Cognition (Palgrave, 2014).
Miriam Matthews is a senior behavioral and social scientist at the RAND Corporation, where she conducts research in the areas of political psychology and diversity and multiculturalism. She has published research on multiple topics, including the factors that contribute to negative intergroup attitudes among Americans and Arabs, the effects of threats on political attitudes, and the situations that influence support for anti-Western jihad. Matthews earned her Ph.D. in social psychology from Claremont Graduate University, and she was a postdoctoral research fellow with the University of Oxford.[Page xix]
Chris Miles is Senior Lecturer in Marketing and Communication in the Department of Corporate and Marketing Communication, Bournemouth University. His research deals with the discursive construction of marketing theory and practice, particularly as it relates to communication, rhetoric and control. His most recent book is Marketing, Rhetoric and Control: The Magical Foundations of Marketing Theory (Routledge, 2018).
Christopher Paul is a Senior Social Scientist working out of RAND's Pittsburgh office. He also teaches at Carnegie Mellon University and in the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Prior to joining RAND full-time in July of 2002, he worked at RAND as adjunct staff for six years. Chris received his Ph.D. in sociology from UCLA in 2001; he spent academic year 2001–02 on the UCLA statistics faculty. Chris has developed methodological competencies in comparative historical and case study approaches, quantitative analysis, and evaluation research. Current research interests include operations in and through the information environment, security cooperation, counterinsurgency, and irregular warfare.
Emily Robertson specialises in the relationship between ideology, international law and war propaganda and has published several journal articles and book chapters on the topic. She is a Visiting Fellow at the University of New South Wales and teaches at the Strategic Defence Studies Centre at the Australian National University.
Sergei A. Samoilenko is an instructor in the Department of Communication at George Mason University. Sergei is a co-founder of the Research Lab for Character Assassination and Reputation Politics (CARP), an interdisciplinary research team of scholars at George Mason University and the University of Amsterdam. He is the past president of the Communication Association of Eurasian Researchers (CAER), an association established to facilitate communication education in the countries of the former Soviet Union and the United States. His research focuses on issues in crisis communication, reputation management, and post-Soviet studies. He is a co-editor of The Routledge Handbook of Character Assassination and Reputation Management, and Handbook of Research on Deception, Fake News, and Misinformation Online.
Ron Schleifer specializes in the connected disciplines of communications, information warfare, history of propaganda, and the Middle East. He is a senior lecturer at the School of Communication Ariel University of Samaria. He founded the Ariel Research Center for Defense and Communications (ARCDC) which deals with issues concerning the role of image in modern warfare and specifically in the Middle East. His articles deal with the manipulation of intellectuals and students in current information wars, PLO and HAMAS PSYOP campaigns in the Arab-Israeli Conflict. His recent book on Psychological Warfare in the Arab-Israeli Conflict was published at Palgrave Macmillan.
Hyunjin Seo is an associate professor and Docking Faculty Scholar in the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Kansas. She is also a fellow at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, Harvard University. Seo's research program focuses on identifying emerging properties of networked communication and understanding their implications for social change, collective action, and civic engagement. She is also the founder director of the KU Center for Digital Inclusion which provides technology education for underserved populations. Before joining academia, Seo was a diplomatic correspondent for South Korean and international media outlets. She has also consulted to U.S. and Korea-based nongovernmental organizations regarding their social media strategies and relations with international press.[Page xx]
Efe Sevin is an assistant professor of public relations at the Department of Mass Communication at Towson University (Maryland, US). His current research focuses on the identifying and measuring the impacts of social networks on place branding and public diplomacy campaigns. Prior to joining Towson University, he worked at Reinhardt University (Georgia, US), University of Fribourg (Switzerland), and Kadir Has University (Turkey). His works have been published in several academic journals and books including American Behavioral Scientist, Public Relations Review, and Cities. His most recent book, Public Diplomacy and the Implementation of Foreign Policy in the US, Sweden and Turkey, was published by Palgrave MacMillan in 2017.
Haseeb Shabbir is a senior lecturer in marketing at Hull University Business School. He has published extensively on marketing and ethics, including Journal of Advertising, Journal of Advertising Research and Journal of Business Ethics. He has also published in other leading marketing journals including in Journal of Services Research, European Journal of Marketing, Industrial Marketing Management and Psychology & Marketing.
Greg Simons graduated with a PhD from the University of Canterbury in 2004, Associate Professor Greg Simons is currently a researcher at the Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies (IRES) at Uppsala University, Leading Researcher in Media and Communication at the Business Technology Institute at Turiba University and a lecturer at the Department of Communication Science at Turiba University in Riga, Latvia. He is on the Senior Editorial Board of the Journal for Political Marketing. His research interests include: changing political dynamics and relationships, mass media, public diplomacy, political marketing, crisis management communications, media and armed conflict, and the Russian Orthodox Church. He also researches the relationships and connections between information, politics and armed conflict more broadly, such as the GWOT and Arab Spring. Simons is the author/editor of numerous refereed articles, chapters and books: Academia EDU Profile https://uppsala.academia.edu/GregSimons.
Mira Sotirovic is an Associate Professor and Karin and Folke Dovring Scholar in Propaganda in the Department of Journalism at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. She received her Ph.D. in mass communications from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her research interests are in news media effects on how people think and perceive social issues, and how those perceptions may affect support for social policies. She has published chapters in books such as the Handbook of Political Communication Research and articles in scholarly journals such as Journal of Communication, Mass Communication and Society and others.
Paweł Surowiec is a PhD, Senior Lecturer in Strategic Communication at the Department of Journalism Studies, University of Sheffield, UK. He is a researcher in the field of political communication, with a particular focus on European politics. His research has examined political public relations, nation branding, public diplomacy and political campaigning. He is the author of the monograph, ‘Nation Branding, Public Relations and Soft Power: Corporatising Poland’, co-edited ‘Social Media and Politics in Central and Eastern Europe’, and has published his research in academic journals in the field. Paweł serves as a Board Member and the Treasurer for the European Communication Research and Education Association. He tweets at @PawelSurowiec.
Louisa Tarras-Wahlberg is a Research Fellow at the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism. She graduated with distinction in Political Science from Stockholm University, and carried out in-depth studies in International Relations at University of [Page xxi]Washington as part of her degree. Tarras-Wahlberg holds a postgraduate degree with distinction in Security Policy from the Swedish Defence University. She has worked within the Swedish Government Offices preventing violent extremism and has also developed and implemented a preventive strategy against violent extremism for the city of Stockholm. Tarras-Wahlberg currently holds a position as a Research Assistant at the Swedish Defence University where she carries out in-depth research on disinformation and information influence campaigns.
Chung-Min Tsai is an associate professor and chair at the Department of Political Science and the deputy director of the Institute of International Relations at National Chengchi University, Taiwan, R.O.C. He received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley. His research interests include comparative politics, political economy, and China studies with a focus on state regulation. He has published articles in the Problems of Post-Communism, The China Quarterly, Asian Survey, Taiwanese Political Science Review, Issues & Studies, and edited volumes
Alicia Wanless is a PhD researcher at King's College London in War Studies where she explores alternative frameworks for understanding the information environment. With more than a decade of experience in propaganda research, Alicia has developed original models for identifying and analysing digital propaganda campaigns. She applies this learning to integrating information activities in support of tech companies, governments and military attempting to address related challenges, including in training exercises. Alicia has shared her work and insights with senior government, military, industry leaders and academic experts at Wilton Park, the Munich Security Conference, the Hedayah Centre, NATO's ARRC and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Her work has been featured in the CBC, Forbes, and The Strategy Bridge, and she has co-authored numerous academic papers and chapters related to propaganda.
Gabriel Weimann is a Full Professor at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzelia, Israel and a Full Professor (Emertus) at the Department of Communication at Haifa University, Israel. His research interests include the study of political campaigns, persuasion and influence, modern terrorism and the mass media. He has published nine books and over 190 scientific articles. His books on media and terrorism include The Theater of Terror, Freedom and Terror, Terror on the Internet and Terrorism in Cyberspace: The Next Generation. He has received numerous research grants from NIJ (National Institute of Justice, United States), Humboldt Stiftung (Germany), the Fulbright Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson Center, United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and more. He was a Visiting Professor at leading universities including Stanford University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Maryland, University of Miami (in the US), Carleton University (Canada), University of Mainz and University of Munich (Germany), the National University of Singapore (NUS) and the NYU branch in Shanghai (China).
Craig Whiteside is an Associate Professor for the US Naval War College program at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California. He is currently a fellow at the George Washington University Program on Extremism, and the International Centre for Counterterrorism - The Hague.
Charlie Winter Charlie's research specialism is terrorism and insurgency, with a focus on online and offline strategic communication. He is studying for a PhD in War Studies, examining how militant groups cultivate creative approaches to governance and war. Alongside his work at ICSR, which is supported by Facebook as part of the Online Civil Courage Initiative, [Page xxii]he is an Associate Fellow at the International Centre for Counter-Terrorism in the Hague and an Associate of the Imperial War Museum Institute in London.He has written for the BBC and The Guardian and has had work published by Critical Studies in Media Communication, Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, the CTC Sentinel, Philosophia, The Atlantic, War On The Rocks, and Jihadology, among others. He holds an undergraduate degree in Arabic from the University of Edinburgh and an MA in Middle East and Mediterranean Studies from King's College London.
Jordi Xifra is Professor at Pompeu Fabra University (Barcelona), where he teaches strategic public relations, public diplomacy and the history of propaganda and public relations. His programme of research centres on interest groups’ communication – in particular those of think tanks and lobbyists –cinematic propaganda and public relations, and the intellectual history of public relations. He is the author and editor of more than 40 books and book chapters on public relations, propaganda and public affairs and has published papers in Public Relations Review, Journal of Public Relations Research, American Behavioral Scientist, Journal of Political Marketing, Comunicar and Historia y Comunicación Social, among others.
A SAGE Handbook of Propaganda, including chapters from major contributors from around the world on the topic of propaganda studies/research/praxis, is required now more than ever. This volume comes at a most precipitous time. We live in what might be termed the ‘Apocryphal Era’, a time of doubtful authenticity, where information is less about power and more about suspicion. When asked, we often yearn for the true, authentic, and genuine to make sense of our media environment, but our authority systems stretching from academe, to the faith-based, public or private, have emerged as deficient in providing tools and pathways to reality. The world at present seem riven with a global dialectical: he vs. she, us vs. them, leave vs. stay, left vs. right. It is into this vacuum of ‘truth’ that propaganda inserts itself, and in which it thrives. This volume is about how propaganda is freshly relevant, not because it ever went away, but because it is even more prevalent than it ever was. The sheer volume of propaganda and the speed with which it is disseminated is new.
Propaganda is also newly relevant because we thought it had largely either gone away or ceased to be a problem, particularly in the 1990s (the ‘end of the cold war’), and so academe seemed to have largely ignored the genre. It took the horrific bombing of the World Trade Center by Al Qaeda and the loss of 2996 lives (Katersky, 2018), and the pre- and post-propaganda that succored the attacks, to bring propaganda studies front and center into academic focus. Suicide bombings, car bombings and terrorist spree killings seemed to increase inexorably. Since George W. Bush's ‘War on Terror’ following September 2001, we have witnessed terrorist attacks throughout the world (e.g. Boston, Madrid, Bali, London, Mumbai, Islamabad, Paris, Brussels, Sousse). These attacks are often conjoined with, and frequently preceded by, the use of propaganda to enhance the sense of terror in the target population. This is not to say that terrorist attacks [Page xxiv]are either new or newly accompanied by propaganda; they are not.
Given this renewed focus on propaganda studies, the editors felt that it was important to draw together a series of chapters from propaganda experts from around the world in multiple geographies and across multiple themes. This is important because there has not previously been an attempt to map the discipline comprehensively from an interdisciplinary perspective, with the exception of the work previously undertaken by the editors (see Baines and O'Shaughnessy, 2013; Snow and Taylor, 2008) and the more narrowly focused, but nevertheless useful, work of Auerbach and Castronovo (2013), which brings together essays on propaganda by English language scholars but does not consider recent Islamist terrorist propaganda or that of the Far Right.
To provide a comprehensive overview of chapter readings on the discipline, this Handbook is broken up into the following four Parts, each of which is described in further detail below, along with a discussion of the individual chapters that constitute the Part.
Propaganda's (Im)moral Stance
- Part 1: Concepts, Precepts and Techniques in Propaganda Research
- Part 2: Methodological Approaches in Propaganda Research
- Part 3: Tools and Techniques in Counter-Propaganda Research
- Part 4: Propaganda in Context
Not all the authors in this volume will agree on assigning propaganda a normative weight. One view holds that, like a hammer that can be used to build a house or strike a victim, purposive intention and manipulation make all the difference in attributing moral judgment and condemnation. This more hands-off scientific approach to propaganda is in keeping with Harold Lasswell's observation that ‘as the technique of controlling attitudes by the manipulation of significant symbols, [propaganda] is no more moral or immoral than a pump handle’ (1928: 264). This utilitarian focus on effectiveness in messaging and reaching the target audience drove research between two world wars, in part to first clinically observe how propaganda is manufactured, before assigning values and norms. What is far more erroneous is to dismiss propaganda's deterministic reputation as unworthy of any study at all. Doob (1966) said that no purification ceremony will expunge society of propaganda's odor. It is part of mass society and mass media relations. We need to confront propaganda's inevitability in our modern lives, unless we want to return to a pre-lapsarian order devoid of mass media and technology. Many contributors take on the subject with passion and fervor, as they should, while others provide analysis with a technician's detached observer hand. Both approaches, we hope, will inspire the reader to recognize the radical functioning and role of propaganda in our daily lives and neither filter out nor ignore its debased intents. Nevertheless, the question arises as to what is propaganda really, both conceptually and operationally? We now turn to this topic.Why Study Propaganda?
Methods and channels of propaganda remain heterogeneous; the digital world, for example, has not replaced all the forms of propaganda but rather it has expanded the channels: old formats continue to prosper, everything from polemical books to posters to public performances and demonstrations. Governments are, unsurprisingly, increasingly concerned that propaganda, particularly but not only from radical Islamist groups and (increasingly) Far Right groups, plays an important role in a person's radicalization or pathway to extremism. Grievances are, thus, talked into people via propaganda. Some eras of history have been more marked by their [Page xxv]propaganda content than others – eras as distinct as the English Civil War or the 1930s, when Nazism, Communism and Fascism were rife. This raises questions about today: are we indeed in a new era of super-propaganda and, if we are, how long will it last? There are several essential reasons for this concern, the first being the rise of globalism and with it the struggles that have gone global in the fight for self-legitimation. Moreover, a world of hierarchical authority and dictatorship has been replaced by something different. We have seen the rise of regimes which claim democratic legitimacy, for example, Russia and Iran both have parliaments and elections but neither country can be regarded as democratic, coming 144th equal and 150th respectively out of 167 in the Economist Intelligence Unit's democracy index rankings (EIU, 2019). Such countries, among many others, are essentially authoritarian and use propaganda to justify their actions and obfuscate their real intentions.Defining Propaganda: What Is It (Not) Anyway?
There is considerable definitional fog about what constitutes propaganda. Propaganda, despite its use over millennia, remains feebly defined and frequently misunderstood. It is particularly poorly understood in layman's terms where propaganda subsumes (usually) inept marketing and promotional activity, or any communication with which someone disagrees. A useful description of propaganda, however, according to Ellul (1973:25), defines it based on its principle aims, which are:
To provoke action … to make the individual cling irrationally to a process of action. It is no longer to lead to a choice, but to loosen the reflexes … to arouse an active and mythical belief. (Ellul, 1973)
This action imperative in propaganda makes it an obvious military and government communications tool, i.e. weaponized advocacy. Definitional opacity aside, there is consensus about how propaganda takes shape. First, it is directed and sponsored information. There must be some institutional backing in place for the propaganda to be engaged. Major sponsors of propaganda methods, particularly from a military perspective, include the UK, France, the United States, the Soviet Union and the Nazi German regime. In the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, the use of propaganda has also been undertaken by rogue states, e.g. North Korea, Iraq and Iran, as well as by stateless terrorist groups or terrorist groups seeking to found states, e.g. Al Qaeda, Hamas, Daesh and Hezbollah.
Second, propaganda information serves the primary interests of the sponsors, which invokes the common pattern of one-way, manipulative campaigns that solicit the action (and sometimes inaction) of the masses. While conventional wisdom may view such campaigns as primitive or anachronistic, they still work, especially on easily distracted, multi-tasking populations who seek selective information as a crutch for their biases. For example, how often do we critically examine our social media feeds and internet news stories for source and beneficiary content? Although digital age participants have ample access to contrarian, contradictory and debatable assumptions online, they do not necessarily or even usually discard rigid opinions when challenged. Online communities also offer more opportunity for like-minded people to connect in ideological fraternity, thereby challenging the notion that as people become isolated, they cease to voice their opinions (see Noelle-Neumann, 1974, on her spiral of silence theory from the pre-internet era).
Propaganda does not ask for belief, nor does it usually employ a rational appeal. It does not seek credibility based on the provision of accurate information: rather, the genre is almost exclusively defined by its emotive content and rejection of non-emotive forms of persuasion, e.g. use of fear. When everything is under suspicion, nothing is sacred, including facts (statements embedded [Page xxvi]in propaganda content frequently lack credibility with at least some of their target audience). Propaganda operates by creating simulacra of rationality, e.g. by the selective use of statistics or seemingly factual claims which cannot be affirmed empirically. Facts become just true or false (an oxymoron, of course), and they are subsumed by the narrative, the story whose characters drive engagement and reach. A good story will trump the truth almost every time. As the old adage goes: ‘a lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes’ (usually attributed to Mark Twain, but fittingly was probably developed by Jonathan Swift, according to Chokshi, 2017).
The old propaganda appeals continue to work: propagandists continue to exploit the fear appeal and the notion of existential threat. Far right concepts like the so-called ‘Death of Europe’ (see Murray 2017) or ‘the great replacement’ (i.e. the notion that the Christian people of Europe are being ‘replaced’ by non-Europeans and particularly Muslims from the Middle East and Africa, see Camus, 2015) are packaged and sold by incendiary propaganda that portrays a nightmarish world of threat and terror. For example, Camus’ work was used in the justification of the Christchurch shootings that resulted in the killing of 50 Muslims in New Zealand in 2019 (McAuley, 2019). The political consequences of propaganda are substantial, and they include, for the first time since World War II, the rise of a mass Far Right in Europe and extensive radicalization apparent in the mainstreaming of reactionary discourse. Moreover, people are not rational agents, what they seek is solidarity, the membership of a group, and intellectual doubt is consequently surrendered to gain this: that is an adequate, if incomplete, explanation for the persuasive power of propaganda.
Propaganda is also, of course, used in peacetime (or pre-war to justify war), by governments and organizations as a way of homogenizing certain desired attitudes in the population. Consider, for example, Prime Minister Blair's attempts to sell the Iraq War to the British people circa 2002/3, which were a largely failed attempt to unify the British people around the government's war plans. The British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) was mobilized to persuade the British public of the rightness of war through Operation Mass Appeal, which planted stories in the media of the menace of Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction (Rufford, 2003). Equally propagandistic is the toxic negative advertising used in political campaigns (particularly in America), often slandering opponents with lurid accusations garnered through opposition research, with the aim of reducing the opposition's voter turnout and galvanizing one's own supporters to get out the vote.Who (Needs to) Believe(s) this Stuff Anyway?
Early notions of propaganda as being highly effective and being ‘swallowed’ by the public in their entirety (see the hypodermic needle or stimulus-response model associated with Lasswell, 1971) have been replaced by much subtler notions. This is specifically the idea that propaganda is a co-production between communicator and audience, and that the target audience, far from being naive, is a willing accomplice in their own persuasion, at least partly through self-deceit. Further, propaganda services the needs of its producers as well as its consumers: propaganda is a psychological resource to affirm and reinforce the conviction of those who construct it. In addition, the outlandish imagery and ideas that are often projected by propagandists are not an appeal to rationality, but rather an invitation to share a fantasy – of fear, of enmity, of existential threat. Outlandish, oversized and even exotic fiction is often proffered by propagandists; a refusal to face facts is accommodated with the invention of new ones.
Credulity and delusionality may be character traits both of those receiving and those creating the propaganda. For propagandists, the conscious transmission of [Page xxvii]untruths is not really the point, and such is their ideological conviction that a lie is really just a different form of truth; it is about ‘right’ and conveys the ‘right’ tone. Thus, many countries around the world face the stubborn, even intractable problem of vicious alienation arising out of propaganda-fed delusions. There are radicalizing Muslims (e.g. UK, United Sates, Egypt, Pakistan, Morocco, Russia) and Far Right radicals (e.g. United Sates, UK, Germany, Russia). There is also the continuing threat presented by Al Qaeda (the original and archetypal global terrorist group) and its various regional franchises (e.g. Islamic Maghreb, Arabian Peninsula). Daesh, despite losing much of the territory it controlled in Iraq and Syria between 2013 and 2019, to a large extent copied the AQ model of franchising, but has been much more successful in attracting recruits quickly, in disseminating its messages and in the number of people it has killed, e.g. in its attacks in 2017 (START, 2018). That some people are persuaded by propaganda, in this case Islamist propaganda, is clear but what also deserves further research is how the relative brand competition between these organizations (e.g. Daesh and Al Qaeda, and Daesh vs. Far Right ideologues) plays out and its effects on adherents.What we Have Covered in this HandbookPart 1: Concepts, Precepts and Techniques in Propaganda Research
The following chapters of Part 1 review aspects of propaganda that are historical, psychological and sociological. The chapters focus, for example, on the historical significance and contemporary imperative of the idea of disinformation and fake news, demonstrating its ubiquity (but also posing the question of why such crudeness appears to work). The chapters illuminate core themes via two central and related forms, that is to say technique and technology, and from this we can derive the integuments of a conceptual framework.
The inherent lesson from this, the first section of the SAGE Handbook of Propaganda, is that the idea of propaganda is more open-ended and, in a sense, omnivorous than standard texts have represented it as being thus far. Specifically, these chapters focus on the power of atrocity propaganda to create and sustain a momentum toward war; but they also illuminate the relevance of things usually held to be external to the realm of propaganda, for example, strategy in war (which it is argued should have a narrative and propaganda imperative as well as a strictly military one). Other examples of issues that extend the orthodox domains of propaganda include terrorism, the random violence of the agitator and revolutionary. For these too make propaganda, but bloodily, since their violent deeds are a symbolic language per se – the targets, the methods and the rejection of normative values are all part of this psychotic medium.
These chapters focus on the three central theatres for the performance of propaganda, that is to say politics (civic and un-civic), war and latterly, though not surprisingly, business and consumption, and the techniques and technologies that facilitate this performance. There is the digital world's intoxication with the visual for example, or the rise of the so-called ‘sock puppets’ and ‘bots’, methods for creating the illusion of audience, or the conscription of real audiences as online amplifiers and loyal verbalizers. Therefore, our contributors discuss those aspects of technique which are driven by digital technology and which offer possibilities of conceptual evolution in the meaning and content of the word propaganda.
Our approaches and conceptual discussions are also enlightened by a critical awareness. The role of atrocity propaganda in Australia in World War I, for example, is revealed as self-limiting: people simply ceased to have faith. Disinformation, on the other hand, has [Page xxviii]currency not because people are naïve but because they have a wish to believe and it is a co-production between creator and consumer, and it ministers especially to the psychological needs of its producers. It is not necessarily a lie but is it therefore an alternative form of truth?
In Chapter 1, ‘Propaganda of the Deed and its Anarchist Origins', Neville Bolt's work on the Propaganda of the Deed is highly original. He analyses the debates and tensions within the mid-nineteenth century radical left and the different conclusions taken from them, manifest in the ideological split between the Anarchists and the Communists, and Anarchism's seeking of the violent overthrow of the state not through mass revolution but through sporadic acts of terror against the social targets of its rage, expressive of both the depths of its alienation and norm rejection. The chronicle of such incidents, even now and through the miasma of history, make for grim reading. They represent a form of propaganda no less worthy of such categorization than posters, tracts and incendiary speeches. The ‘Propaganda of the Deed’ is a language without speech, a symbolic grammar that assaults friends and enemies and the bourgeois nation state they stand against. Its aim of creating a pervasive fear skulking beneath the surfaces of urban life is no less relevant today than it was then. It is this conceptual anatomy that Bolt evokes and diagnoses.
In Chapter 2, ‘Atrocity Propaganda in Australia and Great Britain during the First World War', Emily Robertson discusses World War I as the ultimate case study in the power of atrocity propaganda. This has broader ramifications and history does not offer a superior one. Propaganda was particularly important in Australia because that country did not introduce conscription – all its soldiers were volunteers. This case illustrates how we foster notions of sub-humanity to dehumanize an enemy and make their killing possible, and how universal was the belief in the bestiality of the Germans. People believed because they wanted to (i.e. confirmation bias). Moreover, there is the specific effectiveness of the notion of ‘baby killers’ in mobilizing anger (as Richardson, 2006, also discusses). These are important generic notions on the utility of atrocity propaganda. Robertson's exploration of atrocity propaganda, however, also incorporates the emergent notion and evolution of human rights codes as universal imperatives. The chapter furthers discourse in a number of important ways. It highlights, for example, the salience of bureaucratic propaganda, as where the official reports were exploited by polemicists. It also attests to the idea that successful propaganda contains a particle of truth: for example, the image of German ‘frightfulness’ was not entirely imaginary, the shelling of Scarborough in December 1914 or the Zeppelin raids, for example. A critical point here is how any appeal, if taken to an extreme, can create cognitive exhaustion or even cynicism: and Robertson's work illuminates how the power of atrocity propaganda waned toward the end of the war.
In Chapter 3, ‘Strategic Narratives and War Propaganda', Thomas Colley explains how persuasion is the core dynamic of history. The persuasion-war nexus goes way back in time. War itself is narrative and yet its practitioners seldom conduct it as such. The organization of campaigns, the choice of targets, and weapons and the nature of victories or defeats is such as to communicate meaning via a story. Colley's argument is that such properties determine how war is ‘read’ – is it a ‘just’ war of liberation or the action of an overweening bully against a defenseless target? Yet, as Colley explains, military commanders and politicians possess the ability to frame the narrative – to choose who to act against, how to do it and what methods to use. The Falklands War (fought in 1982 between the UK and Argentina over sovereignty of the Falkland Islands), for example, had a coherent although by no means universally accepted narrative; that of defending a free people against a foreign tyrant and its military [Page xxix]regime. This line of persuasion was broadly accepted by the British public. With the Iraq war, the UK government and military originally held mastery of the narrative content and momentum. They began to lose it both because of the intractable insurgency that followed, the consequent deaths of civilians, and the emergent counter-narrative of a war created on a false prospectus. Colley argues that wars are begun, continued and concluded, largely in ignorance of the centrality of the narrative-framing device to their success, and that military/political actions undermine rhetoric/narratives and create message incoherence. He concludes that we possess considerable autonomy in choosing who we fight or not, and how we fight wars, but that such choices are often made without incorporating questions of meaning. Herein lies the source of abject failure and frustration.
In Chapter 4, ‘From Disinformation to Fake News: Forwards into the Past', Nicholas O'Shaughnessy seeks to answer the question ‘why fake news?’ by positioning fake news, or disinformation, as a potent historic force which has simply assumed more power in our own era for reasons technological, sociological and psychological. The role of disinformation in history needs no embellishment, it encompasses everything from the Trojan Horse to the fabled Zinoviev letter, to the appalling ‘Protocols of the Elders of Zion’, fictions and frauds that have beguiled nations and deluded their senates and leaderships. But O'Shaughnessy's claim is that there is more to this than meets the eye and it is not merely – or even at all – a question of credulous, dumb masses à la Gustav Le Bon (Le Bon, 2014). Rather, the resonance of disinformation arises because of the need to believe, a force so strong that we really can speak of fake news as a co-production in which the target is not victim but ally conspirator.
In Chapter 5, ‘Post-Truth and the Changing Information Environment', Ignas Kalpokas explains that ‘post- truth’ has become our leitmotif, an idea inscribed in so many daily headlines. It has come to define us, a phrase we use to both describe our era and ourselves. We are so convinced that we do indeed live in an age of post-truth, that is to say a kind of merchandised serial fiction, that nothing is truly true any longer: instead, we live in a looking-glass world where everything is believed or maybe everything is disbelieved. We never quite know. What has happened is the comprehensive penetration of cognitive and intellectual defenses. For example, people once possessed the defense mechanism of a well-supported national press and its scribes. Post-truth also exploits vulnerabilities in psychological make-up, for example, the power of ‘confirmation bias’ when we look for evidence to support our existing predispositions. Kalpokas does not seek to simplify what is a complex phenomenon. Rather, he points out the intrinsic momentum of post-truth, that as its highly targeted narratives are empowering and the motivations for engaging it are pleasure seeking, it becomes quite simply a form of enjoyment and a leisure activity. Nevertheless, it is one that pays a psychological dividend, for it reinforces self-conviction; the very existence of the filter bubble repels all ideological or factual challenge, thereby protecting our comfort-zone.
In Chapter 6, ‘The Audience is the Amplifier: Participatory Propaganda', Alicia Wanless and Michael Berk seek to augment history and theory with modern practice. Propaganda has existed in some form since the first forging of civilizations but in general its characteristic down the millennia was its elite origin, in the sense of groups who were able to afford the time and money to build monuments or publish posters or write polemics or make films and so on. Frequently, they were acolytes of the regime, but even those claiming to speak for the masses were often themselves self-selected tribunes of the people. Therefore, the digital revolution represents a change as dynamic in its way as the arrival of print, and certainly as the arrival of radio: its unique enabling [Page xxx]characteristic has been permitting anyone to participate as either creator, responder or indeed saboteur. Unfortunately, the further consequence has been less a plurality of voices than a reinforcing of the loudest chorus in the social media echo chamber. However, the clever propagandist knows and exploits this, persuading the mass demotic voice that they ‘own’ the cause (rather than merely project it) and that they possess autonomy. Hence, as of yore, the cognitive elites remain in control, cunningly enlisting the unwitting into the ranks of partisan voices.
In Chapter 7, ‘Computational Propaganda and the Rise of the Fake Audience' Aaron Delwiche describes some of the technological advances underpinning our theorizing and the conceptual frameworks, which exist today. Aaron enlightens as to how fakery is implemented via the provision of false audiences manipulated by true people, the agents of disinformation and political polarization. These ‘sock puppets’ so-called, and ‘bots’, mimic real people and real audiences but they are, in fact, totally imaginary, a phantom legion of bogus beings. Technology, in other words, enables deceit on the grand scale and creates fraud as the defining feature of our propaganda, people erroneously believing that there is an audience out there endorsing their perspective. It is a way for politicians to inflate their image and for demagogues of all kinds to claim a larger following than they, in fact, have. Such psycho-technical engineering is little understood and beyond the radar screen of the media for the most part. Delwiche's chapter helps clarify just how propaganda is orchestrated today.
In Chapter 8, ‘Visual Propaganda and Social Media', Hyunjin Seo explains how visuality has always been an integument of propaganda: Pope Gregory the Great called statues ‘books for the illiterate’ and all down the centuries paintings, posters, prints and other visual images have had a galvanizing effect. This is because they are a form of speech, a visual grammar that can say far more than formal rhetoric: they represent condensed meaning. Vividness of image says everything without the need for literary exposition, it commands attention, it trespasses on the mind unbidden. Historically, posters in public places were a great way of doing this, and today social media and Facebook memes are simply this – a cyberspace version of the poster in all its visceral power. The chapter evokes a cyberspace that has come to offer a turbo-charged imagery: the saturation of our consciousness with memes, with gifs, with short films. These are endlessly distracting, but very often contain a pithy, and polarizing, political message. By no means is such visuality a force for benevolence. It has, for example, been thoroughly mastered by the mavens of the so-called Alt Right and yet imagery is perhaps the principal form of political consumption of our era, a remorseless politicizing of the visual, or crude aestheticization, which merges very comfortably into the realms of entertainment, hence its persuasive power.
In Chapter 9, ‘Public Relations and Corporate Propaganda', Jordi Xifra explains how the word ‘propaganda’ has seldom been applied to modern corporations and the term ‘public relations’ has always been employed to invoke their externally manipulative operations. Yet these operations are designed to conceal as much as reveal. Like all advocacy, they repress some things and express others, but they also exist – occasionally, periodically, though not invariably – to sanitize the dark side. This essay enlarges our frame of discourse by incorporating the practice and ideology of corporations and consumption within the notion of propaganda. The corporation has ceased to be exclusively a provider of utilitarian solutions, a purveyor of instrumentality. Instead, their brands have become a public language, one that telegraphs status. Everything about an organization talks, and when we buy the brand, we consciously buy meaning and in consuming that meaning, we affirm the particular set of ideas and ideology [Page xxxi]with which the corporation has publicly sought to associate. The merit of Jordi Xifra's article is to remind us that what companies actually do to enhance their brands is really propaganda, and conforms to the core definition of the term and its related practices. The corporation is therefore a political entity, a form of government, sometimes with world-wide powers, and in applying the term propaganda, we are merely unveiling a key truth.Part 2: Methodological Approaches in Propaganda Research
The following chapters of Part 2 review methodological approaches in propaganda studies. This is an area seldom discussed in its own right but is actually sorely needed. The means by which we investigate propaganda and its effects is, and should be, more than just an appendage to an article. This importance is particularly enhanced by the potentially devastating effects of propaganda; consider for example the millions of lives lost in the Rwandan Genocide incited through radio-based propaganda. Just as propaganda itself is completely multi-faceted, ranging from the patriotic posters of the Soviet Union, through the raging radio broadcasts of the Rwandan Genocide, to the homicidal YouTube clips of Daesh, so are the methodologies by which we interrogate these communications. What methods work to analyze the content of Twitter feeds will not work for posters, or for radio broadcasts. Similarly, the sheer complexity of the content of much propaganda today and in yesteryear gives rise to different attempts to analyze its meaning, often through linguistic techniques in analyzing structures of meaning including denotation and connotation. Nevertheless, the methods for constituting propaganda also differ. While some is developed to integrate and unify public opinion, other propaganda is developed to disintegrate public opinion. In Part 2, we consider an important consideration in propaganda studies, namely: how do we determine its effectiveness? This topic is particularly hampered by the fact that it is often difficult to evaluate the effects when one does not have access, or have limited access, to those targeted.
In Chapter 10, ‘Rhetorical Methods and Metaphor in Viral Propaganda', Chris Miles interrogates the rhetorical properties of ‘viral’ propaganda, considering for instance who benefits from the notion that propaganda works to ‘infect’ its target audience? He also considers memetics and its transformation into a popular culture practice. By discussing the links between memetics and contemporary propaganda, Miles highlights how mainstream techniques have influenced political communication. The chapter seeks to make a methodological contribution by demonstrating the benefits of discourse analysis to ‘hypermodern’ political communication such as propaganda.
In Chapter 11, ‘Content Analysis and the Examination of Digital Propaganda on Social Media', Darren Lilleker and Paweł Surowiec critique content analysis as a research method used in examining digital propaganda. They discuss the types of research question that content analysis seeks to answer when examining digital propaganda, before critically examining issues which digital propaganda researchers encounter in their fieldwork. Lilleker and Surowiec also discuss how content analysis of propaganda can serve to reveal its computational, software-generated features.
In Chapter 12, ‘Character Assassination as Modus Operandi of Soviet Propaganda', Sergei A. Samoilenko and Margarita Karnysheva discuss the surprisingly neglected concept of character assassination; a concept they believe is as old as the hills. The authors posit that the increasing use of character assassination relates to the rise of information warfare and online disinformation in international politics. Character assassination is discussed within the context of Soviet propaganda originating in the [Page xxxii]nineteenth century, and its evolution into contemporary Russian propaganda. Samoilenko and Karnysheva argue that character assassination was an innovation and central feature of Marxism-Leninism, becoming a necessary tool to perpetuate the class struggle. Character assassination is therefore outlined as a set of stratagems to discredit influential public figures with opposing ideologies, via disinformation. The chapter discusses how the heritage of the subversive propaganda of early revolutionaries and Soviet ideological doctrines remains relevant in contemporary Russia and beyond.
In Chapter 13, ‘Assessing Propaganda Effectiveness in North Korea: A Limited Access Case Study', Efe Sevin, Kadir Jun Ayhan, Won Yong Jang and Hyelim Lee present a discussion of how to measure the effectiveness of propaganda projects conducted by select South Korean non-state actors directed at North Korean audiences. The chapter represents an interesting study of how to measure the effectiveness of propaganda when there is a near-total lack of access to the target audience, as is the case in North Korea. The authors build their discussion based on propaganda documents, interviews with select practitioners and an impressionistic survey of North Korean defectors. Their findings indicate that South Korean practitioners might use a three-pronged approach to assess the effectiveness of their propaganda projects: via analysis of content, platform and indirect outcomes.
In Chapter 14, ‘Towards the Measurement of Islamist Propaganda Effectiveness: A Marketing Perspective', Paul Baines and Nicholas O'Shaughnessy set out to develop a rich picture of the ecosystem around the measurement of the effectiveness of Islamist terrorist propaganda. Writing from a marketing perspective, they posit that the problem-space of effectiveness measurement is multi-faceted, incorporating considerations of: barriers to measurement; identifying suitable measures of effectiveness and suitable methodologies by which to measure effectiveness; recognizing the centrality of fear appeal use in propaganda and measuring its effect accordingly; and evaluating the effect of terrorist leaders. They also explore locating the center of gravity in terrorist group propaganda usage, and how to measure the effectiveness of terrorist group efforts to move people through the recruitment funnel (from attentiveness through persuasion/influence, to engagement, to action/conversion within the terrorist network). They go on to provide a set of metrics to monitor the use of propaganda at each stage of recruitment progression.Part 3: Tools and Techniques in Counter-Propaganda Research
The following chapters in Part 3 consider the important topic of counter-propaganda. Given the rise in terrorism and its accompanying propaganda, governments are increasingly concerned with how to limit the power of their opponents’ propaganda. The chapters in this Part discuss a variety of topics including how fake news differs from disinformation; how atrocity propaganda was improperly countered in World War I; how Israel has improperly sought to counter Hamas and Hezbollah propaganda; how its adversaries should defend against Russian propaganda as opposed to countering it; how fake news in general is framed and should be countered; how US counterterrorism communication efforts have been evaluated since 9/11; how the route to tackling propaganda is via its central fear appeal; and why peace marketing might be a credible alternative to counter-propaganda efforts. We consider each of these chapters in more detail below.
In Chapter 15, ‘Propaganda and Disinformation: How an Historical Perspective Aids Critical Response Development', the Chief Historian of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Gill Bennett, compares and contrasts ‘fake news’, disinformation and propaganda. She concludes that the distinction between these concepts is less than [Page xxxiii]clear-cut. She argues that both propaganda and disinformation have been employed as tools of statecraft for centuries in the service of worthy and unworthy causes. In the age of instant global media and the 24-hour news cycle, she argues that it is increasingly important for policymakers and the general public to try to discern the differences and similarities between them.
In Chapter 16, ‘Atrocities, Investigations and Propaganda: Lessons from World War I', Ewan Lawson, a former Commanding Officer of the UK Psychological Operations Group and the Royal United Service's Institute's expert on influence operations, seeks to address the challenge of so-called fake news and propaganda. He argues that challenging the falsehoods and identifying the organizations and approaches of adversary propaganda is essential to countering its pernicious effects. This chapter argues that to do this successfully, we must understand earlier critiques of propaganda that have led to its overwhelmingly negative image. The chapter tackles the role of atrocity reporting and propaganda during World War I, outlining efforts made by the allies in the first year of the war to identify and report on German atrocities in Belgium and Northern France, recognizing that as well as being intended to hold the Germans to account, they were also employed to influence domestic and neutral public opinion. Lawson highlights that the evidence was largely ignored or suspected in the post-war period and that this served to hide the actual details of real atrocities, affecting the attention given to war crimes in the Paris Peace Process.
In Chapter 17, ‘Countering Hamas and Hezbollah Propaganda', Ron Schleifer describes how Hezbollah and Hamas have successfully developed their propaganda strategies to assist in their battle against a militarily superior Israel, with an aim to bring them a de facto state, split Israeli public opinion and embitter Israel's existential route. He characterizes Israel's response to this propaganda as feeble. Schleifer, controversially, argues that the Palestinian-Israeli battle has wider implications beyond the Middle East, given both organizations (seeking to represent Shiite and Sunni communities respectively) are actually branches of global radical Islamic networks that reach the Western world as well.
In Chapter 18, ‘Defending Against Russian Propaganda', Christopher Paul and Miriam Matthews reprise their characterization of Russia's contemporary propaganda model (which they title the ‘firehose of falsehood’), review the psychology behind the model's potential effectiveness and discuss how target audiences might defend themselves. They suggest distinguishing between defending against propaganda and ‘counter-propaganda’, given the connotation of the latter to focus on the opponent and their propaganda. This model is applied to contemporary Russian propaganda, which they characterize as high-volume, multichannel, rapid, continuous and repetitive, in order to evaluate its effectiveness from a psychological perspective. Proceeding through this route allows them to identify how to defend against propaganda, using an array of defensive measures.
In Chapter 19, ‘Fighting and Framing Fake News', Maria Haigh and Thomas Haigh consider definitions of fake news, using Ukraine, a country on the frontline of the fight against fake news since 2014, and the United States as case studies. Intriguingly, they take ideas from science studies and philosophy to argue that the status of a news story as real or fake depends not on its truth content per se or even on the intention of its producer, but on the process by which it was constructed. This allows them to document various frames to explain fake news production, which leads on to proposed and attempted methods of fighting fake news.
In Chapter 20, ‘Measuring the Unmeasurable: Evaluating the Effectiveness of US Strategic Counterterrorism Communications', former US Ambassador and Coordinator for Strategic [Page xxxiv]Counterterrorism Communications (CSCC) at the US Department of State (2012 to 2015), Alberto Fernandez, discusses efforts to evaluate public diplomacy programs against extremism and anti-Americanism, from the period after 9/11 until after the establishment of the interagency Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications (CSCC) in late 2010. He argues that data-driven evaluation of CSCC's efforts focused on one key but short-term part of its overall work, the overt communications initiatives of the Digital Outreach Team (DOT). Documenting and analyzing DOT's Arabic video production from its beginning in 2011 to today revealed a rise to peak audience numbers in 2014. He argues that the launch of the joint USG-UAE Sawab Center in 2015 took up some of the slack in the change of DOT content, focus and style, but explains that that program remains in need of public evaluation to assess its effectiveness.
In Chapter 21, ‘Countering the Fear in Propaganda', Paul Baines and Nigel Jones review how counter-propaganda efforts should work specifically to counter what is often central in most adversary propaganda, the fear appeals they contain, especially those disseminated by bullying state actors and terrorist groups. By reviewing a variety of fear appeal models, they argue that adversaries’ propaganda efforts should be evaluated in terms of how severe is the threat posed and how susceptible the target audience feels to that threat. Any counter-propaganda effort must offer a credible solution to reducing or eradicating the fear generated by the adversary, framing that solution as one that is genuinely likely to work to reduce that fear and that the individual in the target audience feels they can actually implement themselves. This Fear Appeal framework provides a novel new way of dissecting adversary propaganda compared with, for example, the SCAME model (Source-Content-Audience-Media-Effects), and is (importantly) more focused on effectively countering that propaganda.
In Chapter 22, ‘Peace Marketing as Counter Propaganda? Towards a Methodology', Dianne Dean and Haseeb Shabbir argue that one way of countering propaganda, and the physical conflict it often supports, is to market its antithesis – peace. Although the marketing of peace might initially sound implausible, it has in fact been achieved in various places, including to some degree, in Northern Ireland and Colombia previously. The authors argue that while the search for peace has been explored in a range of disciplines including psychology, war and conflict studies, peace studies and public diplomacy, there has not yet been any meaningful breakthrough, and sustainable peace remains elusive in many conflicts, even in the presence of peace talks. They consider whether a novel form of marketing, despite marketing's baggage (of being characterized as manipulative), might instead fill this conceptual and practical gap. They argue that a peace marketing program would work to segment citizens into key actor groups, understand how the benefits of peace can be positioned to each group and then develop an overarching strategy in which peace is positioned to aid target audiences in preparing for the end of conflict. This way, target audiences would envision a new pathway to peace.Part 4: Propaganda in Context
The following chapters in Part 4 consider propaganda in context. We felt that this section was necessary given that propaganda practice is heavily context-dependent and that there are great differences in its use. The chapters in Part 4 begin by discussing a variety of contemporary propaganda contexts including how Southeast Asian nations use propaganda to create peace, how the Chinese government use propaganda to promote integration propaganda through their ‘Chinese Dream’ narrative – a me-too derivative of the US ‘American dream’ of good citizenship, how Japanese peace propaganda operates to [Page xxxv]stifle dissent and how propaganda has been used to perpetuate war in Syria. The examples which follow mix contemporary and historical contexts, considering: Cold War propaganda in Greece during the civil war between 1946 and 1949; the nexus between left-wing national populism in Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela; Putin's form of ultra-nationalist propaganda between 2000 and 2018; how Trump's propaganda has served to cow an uncritical, domestic US press; a polemic on the ‘Far Right’ propaganda of the Leave.EU campaign during the 2016 UK-EU referendum campaign; how Daesh used propaganda to target and lure female foreign adherents; how Daesh designed and disseminated its propaganda messages; how terrorist propaganda has evolved in cyberspace since 9/11; and how the UK used counter-propaganda methods against a nimble enemy in the Middle East with maximum effect. We consider each of these chapters in more detail below.
In Chapter 23, ‘Propaganda and Information Operations in Southeast Asia: Constructing Colonialism and its Antithesis, Statehood and Peaceful Ambiguity', Alan Chong uncovers the variety in propaganda from justifying colonialism over a century to today's reinforcement of state legitimacy and the ‘ASEAN Way’. His chapter reveals that propaganda and information operations are not constrained by regional or national boundaries, are not restricted to warfare, but can also be used to enforce a peaceful ambiguity in diplomatic discourse that maintains a status quo. The key contribution is a Southeast Asian creation of narratives in war and an imperfect peace.
In Chapter 24, ‘The Construction of the Chinese Dream', Chung-Min Tsai examines the construction of the Chinese Dream through its use of humiliation discourse and rejuvenation narratives. The Chinese Dream is a widespread meme of Xi Jinping that came with few concrete examples but is now closely integrated into policymaking goals in sustainable development, economic and political reforms, and China's international influence. Chung-Min Tsai lays out the three stages of the Chinese Dream from political slogan to ideological symbol and a rationale for maintaining the dream through Chinese Communist Party rule. He explores the concept from a multidimensional perspective in history, politics, economics and China's rise in global affairs.
In Chapter 25, ‘Darkness and Light: Media, Propaganda, and Politics in Japan', Nancy Snow reinforces the role of mythmaking in propaganda, or how reproducing and extending myths (Japanese homogeneity and consensus) can drive a state to a form of democratic totalitarianism where social solidarity is prized above civic effectiveness and with a real intolerance of dissent. It uncovers the propaganda of integration embedded in the culture, presented as a positive narrative by all citizens in all circumstances and, critically, without the oversight of a police state to enforce conformity.
In Chapter 26, ‘Syria: Propaganda as a Tool in the Arsenal of Information Warfare', Greg Simons applies propaganda rhetoric within an information warfare setting in Syria. Binary realities have taken hold since the beginning of the conflict, where what Simons describes as the propaganda of aversion is in constant contrast with the propaganda of attraction. Through a content analysis of selected newspapers in the aftermath of an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Simons shows how media content can be distorted and manipulated to such a degree that they act as an instrument to perpetuate war through reinforcing binary realities.
In Chapter 27, ‘Cold War Propaganda in Civil War Greece, 1946–1949: From State of Emergency to Normalization', Zinovia Lialiouti undertakes a post-World War II Cold War analysis that crosses the Atlantic between Greece and the United States. Propaganda is viewed as a landscape for power struggles and power relations, with one state pushing an anti-Communist agenda where both physical and psychological [Page xxxvi]actions were used against Greek Communists and their sympathizers to convert them. This conversion process is framed as healing and reformative and evolves into a transnational military and ideological battle with the anti-Communist Cold War Marshall Plan and Truman Doctrine formulas bringing attention to the ‘Greek problem’. Zialiouti's chapter includes a case study of the ‘Work and Victory Week’ of 1949.
In Chapter 28, ‘Propaganda and Populist Communication in Bolivia, Ecuador and Venezuela', Daniel Aguirre and Caroline Avila make an important contextual contribution in regional populist communication practices. Three country studies are presented to show the ebbs and flows of Latin American populism in legacy and current practice. This review of the nexus between propaganda and populism on rhetorical and structural grounds offers a refreshing departure from the dominant media coverage of right-wing national populism in Europe and the United States.
In Chapter 29, ‘Evaluating Putin's Propaganda Performance 2000–2018: Stagecraft as Statecraft', Tina Burrett draws on content analysis, survey data and interviews with Moscow-based journalists to examine the stagecraft of Russian president Vladimir Putin over nearly 20 years. Burrett deftly deconstructs the Putin mystique and how he rose from obscurity to use his security credentials as a symbol of Russian ultra-nationalism in order for Russia to take on the world as a new super patriot power. Burrett examines Putin's foreign and domestic operations and the chapter offers a landscape perspective on not only Putin but the shortcomings of the Russian media environment and its ancillary role in the rise of Putin.
In Chapter 30, ‘Trumpaganda: The War on Facts, Press and Democracy', Mira Sotirovic provides a window into the Trump administration's misinformation campaigns known as Trumpaganda and how President Donald Trump is able to make mainstream news media outlets enemies of the state. She shows how the US news media, when used as a daily punching bag, are complicit in falling for the Trump insults instead of serving the public interest and the truth-seeking function of the press, impacting important policies like healthcare.
In Chapter 31, ‘LeaveEU: Dark Money, Dark Ads and Data Crimes', Emma L. Briant offers an unapologetic characterization of the Leave.EU campaign to support Brexit as Far Right propaganda. This chapter does not attempt to uncover the propaganda elements of the opposing Remain campaign, but rather offers an impassioned analysis of the Leave.EU campaign. Briant seeks to demonstrate, through documents and interviews with principals from Leave.EU and Cambridge Analytica, that the campaign actively promoted and leveraged anti-immigration, racist and nativist narratives to reinforce stereotypes that Britain was under invasion.
In Chapter 32, ‘ISIS Female Recruits: The Alluring Propaganda Promises', Louisa Tarras-Wahlberg takes a gendered approach to propaganda recruitment with her chapter on how Daesh attracts female recruits. Using a qualitative text analysis of two Daesh magazines, Dabiq and Rumiyah, she reveals the pull factors – the offer of support promises in exchange for their sisterly assistance – and adds that the Western media coverage of these recruits was ill-informed about the reciprocal benefits of the recruitment relationship.
In Chapter 33, ‘IS's Strategic Communication Tactics', Charlie Winter and Craig Whiteside address the innovative strategic communication tactics of Daesh from the commercial perspective of building a product from scratch. From the level of message design to dissemination of its message in off- and online and pre- and post-Mosul contexts, the authors demonstrate that the media and persuasion tactics used have rarely been without precedent.
In Chapter 34, ‘The Evolution of Terrorist Propaganda in Cyberspace', Gabriel Weimann addresses the open nature of the internet as an ideal platform for terrorist [Page xxxvii]propaganda. Its free and open network properties provide anonymity and decentralization unavailable through mainstream media channels. Weimann carries the reader from the post-9/11 war on terrorism period through to relocation on social media and most recently to deeper migration flows to the Dark Web, all in an effort to conceal and protect terrorist messaging and their activities.
If we use a synthetic review approach to consider, across all four Parts of the Handbook, what themes, and geographies, have been covered, we can see that the Handbook has embraced a wide area of the propaganda studies field (see Table 0.1), including: propaganda from around the world; integrative and ‘peace propaganda’ approaches; countering violent extremist propaganda; countering disinformation and fake news; atrocity propaganda; and countering cyberspace propaganda and other technological developments. These themes are not mutually exclusive and there is some crossover in topics.Table 0.1 Some of the Key Themes Covered in this Handbook
An analysis of the word frequencies contained in the abstracts in NVivo, based on each précis outlined above, reveals the broad topics that are covered in the book. When these are placed into a word cloud format (see Figure 0.1), they reveal how the Handbook particularly focuses on important contemporary topics such as propaganda effectiveness measurement, fake news, disinformation, war propaganda and propaganda in the digital era.Figure 0.1 Word Cloud Outlining The Main Foci of the Handbook
We also consider what has not been covered in the Handbook; we turn to this topic in the next section.What we have not Covered in this Handbook
In considering what areas of propaganda studies have been covered, we are able to develop an agenda for further research in the field of propaganda and counter-propaganda studies by considering what has not been discussed. The SAGE Handbook of Propaganda could have covered in more detail, for example, the following areas:
- Certain regions where propaganda use is rife (e.g. parts of Africa, including Nigeria, for example, where Boko Haram operate, and Somalia, where Al Shabab operate).
- Contributions from under-published academic communities, particularly those outside the Anglosphere, for example, including more Far Eastern, African and Latin American contributors.
- Some methodologies that can, and have been used, to interrogate propaganda texts (e.g. semiotic analysis) and propaganda dissemination (e.g. social network analysis), among many others.
- Corporate propaganda in more than the limited detail contained herein; this is an important topic that deserves much greater consideration devoted to it and, consequently, this represents an important agenda for future academic research.
- The effects of propaganda, particularly on democratic and authoritarian systems and on public [Page xxxviii]opinion, over time. This is a separate discussion from the effectiveness of (counter) propaganda, for example, and one which demands much greater consideration.
We hope you feel, like we do, that the SAGE Handbook of Propaganda covers an impressive array of propaganda practice, illuminating its use through the modern and historical world via a global perspective. These chapters, from an impressive list of contributors ranging from academics to practitioners, cover a wide array of themes prevalent in propaganda today and in yesteryear. Our intention is to provide propaganda researchers and practitioners with a much more informed understanding of how propaganda functions, how it can be countered and how the effectiveness of both can be measured more accurately. We believe this is the first time a Handbook of Propaganda has been developed with this specific managerialist focus to aid policymakers, and this serves to supplement wider societal perspectives on propaganda also available in this Handbook and elsewhere. While we have tried to be comprehensive in developing the content for this Handbook and have benefitted enormously from the support given to us by our editorial board (see below), any omissions in content remain the fault of the three main editors alone.
This is a large book and it has been less a labor of love than an impassioned task driven by perceived necessity, urgency even, because of the imbalance between the saturation levels of propaganda we encounter and the paucity of the tools we possess, cognitive and otherwise, to constrain or decode it. For us, then, this book has been a compulsive act; for you, the reader, the opportunity to explore the terrible grandeur of the edifice and speculate on what might happen next, on what kind of society might arise from this inferno of rhetoric and visual foment. For that, we have no answer. We can only pose those perplexing questions that new generations, who came to maturity in this climate of polemic, might seek understanding and find resolution.Acknowledgements
To develop this Handbook required the labor of a larger number of people who diligently reviewed each of the chapters, and these comments together with those of the editors, [Page xxxix]were passed on to the author(s) in order that they could improve their submissions. The following reviewers, outlined below, were critical in helping the editors to improve the final chapters.
- Ms Emily Robertson, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, UNSW Canberra, Australia
- Dr Thomas Colley, Department of War Studies, King's College London, UK
- Ms Alicia Wanless, The SecDev Foundation, Canada
- Prof. Aaron Delwiche, Department of Communication, Trinity University, USA
- Dr Hyunjin Seo, William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, University of Kansas, USA
- Prof. Ignas Kalpokas, Department of Public Communication, Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuania
- Dr Chris Miles, Promotional Cultures and Communication Centre, Bournemouth University, UK
- Dr Darren Lilleker, The Media School, Bournemouth University, UK
- Mr Sergei Samoilenko, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, George Mason University, USA
- Dr Maria Haigh, School of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA
- Dr Thomas Haigh, College of Letters & Science, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA
- Dr Christopher Paul, RAND Corporation, USA
- Dr Miriam Matthews, RAND Corporation, USA
- Ms Gill Bennett, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, HM Government, UK
- Mr Nigel Jones, Georgina Capel Associates Ltd, UK
- Mr Alberto Fernandez, Middle East Broadcasting Networks, USA
- Dr Emma Briant, Journalism Studies, University of Sheffield, UK
- Prof. Gabriel Weimann, Department of Communication, University of Haifa, Israel
- Ms Louisa Tarras-Wahlberg, International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism, Sweden
- Dr Zinovia Lialiouti, Center for Modern Greek History, Academy of Athens, Greece
- Prof. Tina Burrett, Global Studies, Sophia University, Japan
- Dr Mira Sotirovic, Department of Journalism, University of Illinois, USA
- Dr Alan Chong, RSIS, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
- In putting together a book of this size, with this shape, focus, and international reach, we are grateful for the advice we received from our editorial review board, outlined below:
- Dr Greg Simons, Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies, University of Uppsala, Sweden.
- Mr Ewan Lawson, Royal United Services Institute, UK.
- Dr Dianne Dean, Faculty of Business, Law and Politics, University of Hull, UK.
- Dr Ron Schleifer, School of Mass Communication, Ariel University, Israel.
- Dr Neville Bolt, Department of War Studies, King's College London, UK.
- Prof. Jordi Xifra, Department of Communication, Pompeu Fabra University, Spain.
- Kadir Jun Ayhan, Graduate School of International and Area Studies, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, South Korea.
- Prof. Chiyuki Aoi, School of Public Policy, University of Tokyo, Japan.
The editors would also like to thank Delia Alfonso Martinez, our senior editor, for her help in driving the very idea of a propaganda handbook, and for her considerable help in scoping and shaping the final product. Her energy and dedication, our (sometimes vexed) conversations on politics and ideology (including Spanish and Catalonian politics), and her professionalism all helped drive this unique project forward; it is what it is because of her considerable input. We would like to thank Umeeka Raichura for her help on the (not inconsiderable) administration associated with the Handbook, including administering the reviewing and chasing us all up to ensure the book was out on time. We would also like to thank Amber Turner Flanders for her administrative support during her internship with Sage, supporting Umeeka, and Colette Wilson for her help in sorting out what we all think is a brilliant cover design. In addition, we would like to thank the production editor, Jessica Masih, for the sterling work undertaken to bring our project into physical and digital reality. Finally, we have done our best to ensure that the Handbook is as error-free as possible and contains all the necessary permissions. Where any errors persist after publication, the fault remains with the three main editors.[Page xl]References2013). The Oxford Handbook of Propaganda Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press.and (Eds.). (2013). Propaganda, Vols. I–IV. London: Sage Publications.and (Eds.) (2015). Le grand Remplacement. Plieux: Chez L'Auteur.(2017). That wasn't Mark Twain: How a Misquotation is born. The New York Times, 26 April. Retrieved from: www.nytimes.com/2017/04/26/books/famous-misquotations.html (accessed 14 April 2019).(1966). Public Opinion and Propaganda. New York: Henry Holt.(EIU (2019). Democracy Index 2018: Me Too? Political Participation, Protest and Democracy. London: Economist Intelligence Unit. Retrieved from: www.eiu.com/topic/democracy-index (accessed 14 April 2019).1973). Propaganda: The Formation of Men's Attitudes. Trans. and . New York: Vintage Books.(2018). The 9/11 toll still grows: More than 16,000 Ground Zero responders who got sick found eligible for awards. ABC News, 10 September. Retrieved from: https://abcnews.go.com/US/911-toll-growsl-16000-ground-responders-sick-found/story?id=57669657 (accessed 15 April 2019).(1928). The Function of the Propagandist. International Journal of Ethics, 38(3), 258–278.(1971). Propaganda Technique in World War I. Boston, MA: MIT Press.(2014). The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind. Scott's Valley, CA: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.(2019). The New Zealand attack ratchets up pressure on Europe's anti-immigrant right. Washington Post, 19 March. Retrieved from: www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/the-new-zealand-attack-ratchets-up-pressure-on-europes-anti-immigrant-right/2019/03/19/a9447624-49cf-11e9-8cfc-2c5d0999c21e_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.916e31e81802 (accessed 15 April 2019).(2019). How Rupert Murdoch's empire of influence remade the world. New York Times. www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/04/03/magazine/rupert-murdoch-fox-news-trump.html (accessed 14 April 2019)and (2017). The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam. London: Bloomsbury Publishing.(1974). The spiral of silence: a theory of public opinion. Journal of Communication, 24(2), 43–51(2006). What Terrorists Want. London: John Murray.(2003). Spooks helped sex up Saddam report, confirms Blair govt. The Times of India, 29 December, 1.(2019). Propaganda. The International Encyclopedia of Journalism Studies. and (General Editors), , and (Associate Editors). Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.(2008). Routledge Handbook of Public Diplomacy. Oxford: Routledge., & (Eds.). (START (2018). Annex of Statistical Information: Country Reports on Terrorism 2017. National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, September. Retrieved from: www.state.gov/documents/organization/283097.pdf (accessed 15 April 2019).10.4135/9781526477170.n1