Techniques of Persuasion/Propaganda

The Band Wagon Device
The Testimonial Device
The Transfer Device
The Name Calling Device
The Glittering Generalities Device
The Plain Folks Device
The Card Stacking Device
• Attempts to persuade people to
support a candidate, issue, or
product because large numbers of
other people are supposedly doing
• The Bandwagon uses social evidence
to legitimize itself and become
attractive. It plays heavily on the
need for belonging, making the
group a desirable place to be.
• The main theme is very recognizable:
"everybody's doing it!" The technique here is
one of the revival show. Fill a hall or stadium,
march a million men in a parade. Use pomp
and circumstance, music, flags, colors,
movement, all the dramatic arts. The user of
the Band Wagon device appeals to the desire
common to most of us, to follow the crowd.
Testimonial or Endorsement
• Involves persuading people to
support an issue or candidate
because well-known individuals, such
as a prominent government official
or famous entertainer, offer such
Testimonial or Endorsement
Transfer or Association
• Involves associating a candidate with
a respected person, group, or
Transfer or Association
Good feelings, looks, or ideas transferred to the person
for whom the product is intended.
Transfer or Association
• In the Transfer device, symbols are constantly
used. The cross represents the Christian
church. The flag represents the nation.
Transfer uses symbols to stir emotions. At
their very sight, in an instance, we can be
aroused to a myriad of complex of feelings
with respect to a subject. The Transfer device
can be used for and against causes and ideas.
Transfer or Association
Name Calling
• Attaches a negative or unpopular
label to a person to discredit that
person’s public image.
Name Calling
Name Calling
• The propagandist appeals to hate and fear by
giving "bad names" to groups, nations, races,
practices, beliefs and ideals they would have
us condemn and reject. Name calling can also
accomplished by implication with a "bad
name". Such as the headline: "so and so visits
communist China, ignores human rights
Glittering Generalities
• Uses broad, sweeping statements
that sound impressive but have little
real meaning.
Glittering Generalities
• A common element of glittering
generalities are intangible nouns that
embody ideals, such as dignity,
freedom, fame, integrity, justice, love
and respect.
Glittering Generalities
Plain Folks
• Attempts to attract people to a
political figure by portraying him/her
as just an average American.
Plain Folks
Plain Folks
• Used by politicians, business leaders, ministers
and etc. to win our confidence by appearing to
be people like ourselves--"just plain folks
among the neighbors." This is especially true
during election years. Politicians kiss babies,
eat apple pie, wave the flag (transfer device)
go to picnics; they show up at places or do
things they would never usually do just to
show that they are just like us.
Plain Folks
Card Stacking
• Attempts to persuade people to support
a candidate or issue by making the
positive characteristics far outweigh the
negative. It can also be used to make the
negative far outweigh the positive for
opposing sides.
Card Stacking
• The propagandist using card stacking
will omit facts and offer false
testimony. They will create a smoke
screen by raising a new issue when a
position cannot be defended or
becomes embarrassing.
Other Techniques
• Misery - Appeals to pity or sympathy to gain
• Fancy Words - Use of elegant or technical
sounding words to persuade and camouflage
the truth.
• Word Magic - Uses emotional or catchy words
to create a positive feeling and makes it easier
to remember the product or idea.
Other Techniques
• Black and White - Presents an issue as having
only two choices. If you don’t like one choice,
you must choose the other
• Simplicity and Repetition - Keep it simple and
say it often enough so people will remember it
and believe it
Identify these propaganda techniques
“Voters deserve a candidate who knows they don’t have
a lot of money to spare for fancy government
programs. I’ve worked hard all my life. I promise to
handle the city’s money as if it were my own.”
Glittering Generalities
“Don’t be left out, most people agree with us, you
should too.” Which technique is being used?
“I’m going to Disney World after the Super Bowl says,
Drew Brees” Which technique is being used?
Testimonial or Endorsement
. “My opponent promises to cut the city budget to
increase police protection and to open new fire
stations all at the same time. Ladies and gentlemen,
my opponent is either a magician or a fool.”
Name Calling
A candidate shoots a commercial and shows him helping
to build a house.
Which technique is being used?
Plain Folks
A lawyer makes a commercial standing by famous
New Orleans landmarks. Which technique is being used?
Transfer or association
Techniques of Persuasion/Propaganda:
card stacking
plain folks
glittering generalities
name calling