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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best guide to US politics I've seen
I picked up this book in a library sale (sorry, Amazon, no money for you this time) attracted by the title and hoping to pick up some useful tips for a campaign.
What I actually found was an immensely knowledgeable, readable and enlightening exposé of the American political/economic system and how lobbyists, image makers and journalists work symbiotically to...
Published on 11 Oct 2004 by S. C. Johnson

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good book
It is a good book that covers a lot interesting issues connected with PR. It is very useful for those studying PR at university.
Published 17 months ago by Miss Nina Goncarova


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best guide to US politics I've seen, 11 Oct 2004
By 
S. C. Johnson - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I picked up this book in a library sale (sorry, Amazon, no money for you this time) attracted by the title and hoping to pick up some useful tips for a campaign.
What I actually found was an immensely knowledgeable, readable and enlightening exposé of the American political/economic system and how lobbyists, image makers and journalists work symbiotically to mould American political and commercial consciousness to the benefit of their corporate paymasters.
Suddenly the whole Bush/Cheney debacle became explicable: it didn't come out of nowhere, but is part of a historical continuum. I was already a dissenter before reading this, but after seeing exactly how, and how calculatedly, the public has been manipulated by public relations men (and they are mostly men) I will do pretty much anything short of outright illegality to get these people out of power.
Unelected and unaccountable, the PR industry controls what we see hear and read. Read this book and be scared at their power.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My students loved it, 5 Oct 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
Given recent noise around the White House sex scandal, my undergraduate students were interested in how the spin machine operates. This book gave them a wonderful historical perspective on current events and how they are packaged in order to influence public opinion.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pretty Girls are just the Tip of the Iceberg, 30 April 2007
By 
William Cohen (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
I discovered this book as an offshoot of watching Adam Curtis's brilliant BBC documentaries. Stuart Ewen appears as a commentator on the use of public relations in politics.

I remember as a child being given a picture of the Soviet Union as a place where all the information was controlled, the Government churned out propaganda and used imagery and public celebrations to manipulate the masses. Well, from this book, it sounds like they got the ideas from the Americans. Or in fact the Western view of the Communist system was to project their own sins upon it.

This is not comfortable reading, but it's fascinating. Especially when you read about an era where consumer indulgence was expected to go on forever, personal debts were at an all time high, developers were building houses only for the wealthy and big business was regarded as an unalloyed good. It ended in the Great Depression and the New Deal.

Having a few pretty girls promote your wares is the soft skills of PR professionals. They have considerably more unpleasant techniques in their armoury.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book., 21 Feb 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
Trying to make sense of the Clinton/Lewinsky scandal, the Republican and Democratic PR strategies, etc., I ran across this book. Though there's no mention of the scandal, it's insights into the history and methods of spin provided me a first clear sense of how the whole thing was played. Great book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent. Gripping and Illuminating, 6 Dec 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
This is one of the best books I've read in years. Cuts through the orchestrated muck and disinformation that have deformed public life in American society. A fascinating look at the roots of PR, and the thinking of those who invented it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A major piece of work, 2 Nov 2012
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This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
I came across this work when doing some research for my own planned book on applied public relations in the workplace. In the first instance, I was drawn in and subsequently captivated by a stand alone extract featuring Ewen's account of his extraordinary meeting with Edward Bernays and this led me to order the book and work my way through it more systematically. It is profoundly interesting and very accomplished, full of information, insights and interest bound together by immaculate scholarship and a strong narrative sense. It presents an unmissable account of the origins, development and deployment of modern public relations and Ewen manages to strike a fine balance between doing such a big subject both academic and narrative justice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great PR reource, 31 Mar 2010
By 
Andy Green "Andy Green creativity maven" (beautiful Barry Island) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
This is a must read book for anyone interested in the social history of public relations and for any communicator wanting to have an understanding of the greater hinterland to their craft.
It's got great depth and copes well with the challenge of providing analysis and insight on such a broad, wide-ranging canvas.
Some of the material, for example responses to the introduction of radio and the spread of information are no different to contemporary reactions to the introduction of new social media.It's that deja vu again.
One disappointment was the sub title with its reference to 'spin'. I suspect this was a publisher's afterthought, an intent to create a controversial element and link with a popular mis-nomer of PR (Perhaps, the use of the word 'spin' here is a an ironic example of the practice of 'spin'.)I make this comment as a keen student on the subject of 'spin'; there is not even an index reference and don't recall any references by the author to spin.
Overall, however, a masterly piece of work in a relatively unploughed field.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply outstanding, 2 Jan 2001
By 
Mutale Nkonde (Southport, Merseyside United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
Information rich and compelling Ewan gives any serious student of PR a framework into which to place the indusrty that is synonomous with the phrase 'let's do lunch.' Taking us from the social instability of the late nineteenth century, to Edward L Bernays the architect of modern day Public Relations Counsel and into the last decade of the twentieth century PR! is a book that image making professionals cannot afford to miss.
I found myself envious of the students who took Ewen's CULTure class and Ewen inspired me to deliver my counsel with integrity.
Thank you Ewen for such a remarkable text.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pr,a social history of spin., 28 Sep 2013
This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
Brilliant read.a great book for anyone interested in the techniques of mass persuasion.this book lifts the lid on the pr industry and exposes many hidden agendas.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The definitive book on PR, 6 Jan 2013
By 
Robert Wilson (scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pr!: A Social History of Spin (Paperback)
If you only buy one book on pr,make it this one.It reminded me of the shock doctrine the way it covers all the essential points while reading like a gripping novel.In my top ten of factual books.
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Pr!: A Social History of Spin
Pr!: A Social History of Spin by Ewen (Paperback - 2 Oct 1998)
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