• According to Freud, in human nature there are sexual and aggressive forces hidden in the minds of all human beings—forces that if not controlled, lead society to chaos and destruction
  • Today, theory used to control mass crowd in world of mass democracy
  • Edward Bernais- first person to use Freud’s ideas to manipulate masses
  • Showed corporations how they could make people want things they don’t need by linking mass produced goods to their unconscious desires
  • Political idea- how to control masses- by satisfying inner selfish desires; made happy and docile- all consuming self
  • 100 years ago, Freud’s ideas hated by society- Vienna- ideas embarrassing and idea of examining inner feelings was threat to Empire control
  • Hidden inside all human beings are dangerous and instinctual drives
  • Devised psychoanalysis– by analyzing dreams and free association, he unearthed sexual and aggressive forces, which are remnants of our animal past
  • These forces are feelings we repress because they are too dangerous
  • War- how people expected to behave due to psychoanalysis- government forces unleashed primitive forces
  • Making money by manipulating human brain

Experiment A: Persuade Women to Smoke

–          What do cigarettes mean to women?

–          Cigarettes=symbol of penis and male power

–          Must find way to connect cigarettes to challenging male power, and then women would smoke

**CIGARETTES= TORCHES OF FREEDOM

–          used debutantes smoking as catalyst

–          across US, cigarettes among women became socially acceptable

–          made a woman independent

**POSSIBLE TO PERSUADE PEOPLE TO BEHAVE IRRATIONALLY BY LINKING PRODUCTS TO EMOTIONAL DESIRES AND FEELINGS**

Ex. the idea that smoking is freeing= irrational

–          played on the desire to be independent

**IRRELEVANT OBJECTS COULD BECOME POWERFUL EMOTIONAL SYMBOLS OF HOW YOU WANT TO BE SEEN BY OTHERS **

–          emotional connection to product or service

–          products always been promoted in functional ways- practicality

“Shift America from trained to desired culture”

**DESIRES MUST OVERSHADOW NEEDS**

–          What motivates the human mind?

–          Produce new type of customer

Ex. Cars= symbol of male sexuality

–          Celebrities express character through clothing

*how easy unconscious aggressive forces in human beings could be triggered when they were in crowds

– underestimated aggressive instincts of human beings

–          submerged, dangerous forces

–          just under surface of society; forces that could erupt easily and produce frenzied mob capable of destroying government

Democracy wrong?

–          belief that humans could be trusted to make rational decisions on a rational basis is WRONG

–          stimulating inner desires then confronting them with consumer products

–          consumerism= central motor in everyday life

–          how to run mass democracy: happy and docile consumers

o   stimulate irrational self

Stock Market Crash

–          consumers stopped buying desired objects

Attack on civilization as sign of human progress

–          civilization actually created to control dangerous animal forces

–          idea of individual freedom (democracy) impossible; human beings never allowed to truly express themselves (too dangerous); always be controlled and therefore discontent

Roosevelt

–          human beings rational and could take active part in government

–          explain policies, take opinions into account

*George Gallop and Elmo Roper rejected Bernais

–          based on idea people could be trusted to know what they want

–          one could measure and predict behaviour of the public when asked strictly factual questions, and avoid manipulating their emotions

Scientific Polling: people behave rationally and make good decisions, but must be truly informed about government workings

*voice of people is rational and should be heard

  • Under umbrella of National Organization of Manufacturers- campaign launched to connect public and big business
    • Businesses responded to desires where politics couldn’t
    • Depended on treating people not as active citizens but as passive consumers because this is the key to control in a mass democracy
      • People not in charge, but desires are in charge
      • No decision making
      • Driven by instinctual desires, and if you can trigger these desires, you can get what you want

* World War II- altered view of democracy and the way the world was governed

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