Class 04 - Photoshop - Propaganda

Assignment: Propaganda

Develop a piece of propaganda and deliver it to your intended audience. For this project you will need to develop both a message and a distribution strategy. The message should involve images and text and should use at least one of the tactics indicated below. Your aim is to influence the opinions of people, rather than impartially providing information. You should design the message with your distribution strategy in mind. Think about your audience. What is the best way to reach them? You can use email, mailboxes, cell phones, walls/bulletin boards, etc., etc. You could choose to spoof a form of propaganda that you have found (please share the original with me) or you could develop your own from scratch.


Propaganda Critic

Wikipedia Propaganda page

Think Again - activist artists

German Propaganda Archive

Propaganda Re-Mix Project

Chinese Propaganda posters

Adbusters Posters

Propaganda is a specific type of message presentation directly aimed at influencing the opinions of people, rather than impartially providing information. You could view advertising as a form of propaganda whereby a company tries to convince a certain demographic to buy their product. The government and other groups use propaganda to encourage/discourage types of behavior (stop smoking, wear seatbelts, be Jewish). Perhaps the most powerful forms of propaganda come in times of war where it is used to created hatred towards a supposed enemy or to try and undermine the enemy's resolve. Propaganda uses various tactics:

Name-calling - The use of names when referring to groups or individuals (usually negative) - commie, fascist, pig, yuppy
Glittering generalities - The use of adjectives to describe in a positive way - Makes the product, event, person sound better then they are.
Euphemisms - Using language that attempts to pacify the audience in order to make an unpleasant reality more palatable. During wartime, civilian casualties are referred to as "collateral damage," and the word "liquidation" is used as a synonym for "murder."

Transfer - A device by which the propagandist carries over the authority, sanction, and prestige of something we respect and revere to something he would have us accept.
Testimonial - The use of an important person to testify to the importance of the product, event, or person even if that person may not be an expert in the matter.

Plain Folks - The use of common language "Normal Folk" to describe the product, event or person to make it seem as if its already been accepted by the masses.
Bandwagon - The use of "Everybody's doing it" so you should to.
Fear - By playing on the audience's deep-seated fears, practitioners of this technique hope to redirect attention away from the merits of a particular proposal and toward steps that can be taken to reduce the fear.