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Political communication wk 7

by: Carolina Chaves

Political communication wk 7 MC 421

Carolina Chaves
GPA 3.4

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Race and Politics in the U.S. Case Law Politics and Persuasion
Political Communication
Ethan C. Stokes
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Carolina Chaves on Sunday October 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to MC 421 at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Ethan C. Stokes in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Political Communication in Mass Communication, at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa.


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Date Created: 10/09/16
Week 7 MC 421 Race & Politics in the U.S. Race & Politics – Key Concepts & Definitions • Race: • Each of the major divisions of humankind, having distinct physical  characteristics. • A group of people sharing the same culture, history, language, etc. • A group or set of people or things with a common feature or features. • A group of people who descend from a common ancestor. • Segregation: • De Jure (“by law”) v. De Facto (“in actual fact”) • White Flight: • When white citizens relocate due to the influx of minorities in their  neighborhoods • Jim Crow Laws: • Poll Taxes • Grandfather Clause • Literacy Tests Historical Overview of Race & Politics in the U.S. The Bell Curve: • Published in 1994 • Compared IQ Test Scores  • Minorities are genetically inferior to Whites in terms of intelligence? • Factors ignored: ­ Quality of Education ­ Validity of IQ tests as a true measure of intelligence ­ Socioeconomic Status Plessy v. Ferguson (1896): • Homer Plessy • Louisiana law mandated segregation on trains • Plessy was an “Octoroon” • Supreme Court Ruled “Separate but Equal.”  • Segregation becomes legalized. Brown v. Board of Education (1954): • Linda Brown • Topeka, Kansas • The negative effects of school segregation on children (i.e. The Doll Test) • Supreme Court rules school segregation as unconstitutional. • But history repeats itself…  https:­xhE2MAY8  Claudette Colvin: • In March 1955, she resisted the mandatory bus segregation in Montgomery, AL. • She was arrested. • This happened 9 months prior to Rosa Parks. • Why did the NAACP choose not to use her for political representation of the  movement? Political Advertising, Persuasion, & Political PR • Political Advertising: • Provides candidates and parties the opportunity to present their message  directly to the public without the mediation of journalists • Paid or Free Advertising • Ex: Billboards, Internet, Posters, Press, Radio, Social Media,  Television, etc. • TV Ads remain the most popular (and most expensive) form of  political advertising. • Political Marketing: • The application of marketing principles to politics • Marketing – A broad concept describing how societies communicate and  distribute products and services of value to consumers • Segmentation – Dividing the marketplace into segments to maximize  profitability • Positioning – Aims to make a brand occupy a distinct position, relative to  competing brands, in the mind of the customer Characteristics of Presidential Campaign Ads:  • Political advertising is increasingly funded by outside political groups. • The amount of money spent on political advertising continues to increase. • Negative political advertising is increasingly popular. • Political ads are often of high production value to shape opinions. • The purchasing, timing, & mediums of ads have become more strategic. • Negative political ads have a long history in the U.S. • “Going Negative” is a logical rhetorical strategy in persuasion. • Questioning an opponents’ credentials, character, policy/voting records,  etc. • Negative ads that play­down their negativity either through implicit messaging  and/or through avoiding direct, personal attacks are often more effective to win  votes. • Numerous studies show that people better remember (and recognize more  quickly) negative ads than positive ads. Pros: • Focuses more on issues than positive ads • Gets people thinking, arguing, and active in politics/political deliberation • Encourages supporters/activists to work harder for their campaign • Serves as a check (i.e. accountability) on the political system Cons: • Discourages voters and often reduces trust in government • Rewards opposition research (ugly, mean­spirited) • Distorts the truth • Political Persuasion: • A symbolic process by which communicators try to induce individuals to  freely change their attitudes, beliefs, and opinions through transmission of  a message • Three Components of Credibility: • Expertise • Trustworthiness • Good Will Political Persuasion: The Political Persuasion Industry: • Pressure Groups: • Any organization that aims to influence public policy by seeking to  persuade decision­makers by lobbying rather than by standing for election  and holding office • Lobbyists: • Work for these pressure groups • They’re also known as (political or public affairs consultants) • Seek to persuade policy­makers of the merits of a case for their client • Political Public Relations: • “The management process by which an organization or individual actor  for political purposes, through purposeful communication and action,  seeks to influence and to establish, build, and maintain beneficial  relationships and reputations with its key publics to help support its  mission and achieve its goals”  ­  (Strömbäck & Kiousis, 2011, p. 8) • Often refers to the political influences on the media, their agendas, and  how they frame political actors, events, issues, and processes • Like Public Relations, Political PR often gets a bad reputation among  scholars from other fields of study. • Political PR ≠ Spin or Spin Doctoring Political PR can be viewed as:  • A concept within the field of Political Communication OR  • As a separate field of scholarly research Global & Cultural Differences in Political PR: • Like most academic research fields, Political PR has a heavy Western focus.  • The U.S. view of Political PR is heavily focused on relationship management  with the media and the public (or publics). • Think Lippmann & Bernays • The European view of Political PR is also relational, but is more focused on the  public/public sphere. • Think Dewey & Habermas Key Theories & Concepts of Political PR • Relational Theory of PR: • Argues that effective management of relationships around common  interests/goals leads to a mutual understanding and benefit for  organizations and publics • Contingency Theory of PR:  • Views PR (& Political PR) on a fluid persuasion continuum ranging from  total advocacy to complete accommodation of the news media • Information Subsidies:  • When PR specialists push ready­to­use newsworthy information to the  news media in order to gain access to media time and space • Indexing:  • Focuses on the dependency of mass media sources on government  officials and predicts that this dependency affects the subsequent news  coverage • Agenda Indexing:  • Asserts that political PR efforts by government insiders influences the  transfer of issue and attribute saliency (or prominence) and its range of  news media coverage


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