Persuasion in the Media Age:  by Timothy  Borchers
471 pages, $71.95 list
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Persuasion in the Media Age
Fourth Edition
Persuasion in the Media Age addresses the impact of electronic media on the practice of persuasion and reviews constantly evolving digital strategies. Today’s world demands a new perspective on persuasion—one that is grounded in the assumption that human consciousness and culture have been forever altered by communication technology. The fourth edition provides timely examples of persuasion in political campaigns, social movements, marketing, and interpersonal relationships—and the role of social media and media technologies in all of the contexts.

From advertisers to politicians to influencers to friends, persuaders use increasingly sophisticated strategies to sway behavior. Borchers skillfully weaves theory, research, and engaging examples to help readers understand the practice of social influence—and to apply critical-thinking skills to the persuasion they encounter daily.

The text takes an interdisciplinary approach to provide the latest thinking on persuasion while also drawing on a broad theoretical base for foundational concepts, such as attitudes, rhetoric, and human motivation. Throughout, Borchers emphasizes audience, storytelling, visual images, and ethics. This comprehensive, insightful, and accessible overview of persuasive communication teaches readers how to be skilled creators of persuasive messages—as well as critical consumers.
“The textbook is impressively thorough. Its greatest strength is its currency, linking classic persuasion topics with contemporary technological applications.” — Brian Simmons, Oklahoma Christian University

“I really appreciate the perspective of this textbook. It takes an age-old concept such as persuasion and places it in the modern mediated context. It will be both interesting and helpful for my students.” — Brian Mattson, Lee University
Table of Contents

1. Persuasion in Contemporary Society
Media and Consciousness / Implications of New Media / Elements of Persuasion / Defining Persuasion / Persuasion in the Media Age / Objectives for Persuaders / Implications for Audience Members

2. Theories of Persuasion
The Nature of Theory / Functions of Theories / Early Rhetorical Theory / Semiotics / Audience-Oriented Theories / The Social Construction of Reality / Media Theories

3. Persuasion and Ethics in the Media Age
Ethics and Persuasion / Ethical Challenges of the Media Age / Approaches to Ethical Decision Making / Confronting Unethical Persuasion / Persuasion and the Public Sphere / Visual Images and Ethics / Political Persuasion / Advertising / Organizational Advocacy / Journalism / NCA Credo for Ethical Communication / Five Guiding Principles / Ethics and Audience Members


4. Media Influences on Persuasion
Media: An Overview / Media Sources / Media Channels / Prominent Channels / The Sensory Experience of Media / News

5. Audiences and Attitudes
The Audience in the Media Age / Audiences and Attitudes / Audience Analysis / Polling / Audience Segmentation / Other Methods of Audience Segmentation

6. Persuasion and Visual Images
Attributes of Visual Symbols / Graphic Design / Photography / Video / Virtual Reality / How Visual Images Persuade / Visual Images and Deception / Evaluating Images

7. Persuasion and Language
Telling Stories / Using Language Strategically / Creating Social Reality / Electronic Eloquence / Language and Power

8. Persuasion and Culture
Defining Culture / Beliefs, Values, and Behaviors / Traditional Mainstream US Values / Hegemony / Race and Culture / Gender and Culture / Consumer Culture

9. The Persuasiveness of the Source
Sources in the Media Age / Defining Credibility / The Image of the Source / Institutional Sources / Individual Persuaders / Image Repair / Covert Persuasion: Propaganda / Artificial Intelligence

10. The Reasoning Process
Reasoning in the Media Age / Toulmin's Model of Reasoning / Narratives / Evaluating a Persuader's Reasoning

11. Motivational Appeals
The Power of Motivational Appeals / The Social Construction of Affect / Emotion / Needs / Values / The Nature of Motivational Appeals / Artificial Intelligence and Motivational Appeals


12. Political Campaigns
A Theoretical Model for Political Campaigns / Stages of a Political Campaign / How the News Media Cover Politics / The Candidate / Audiences and Polling / Social Media / Candidate Websites / Political Advertising / Political Conventions / Speeches and Rallies / Debates

13. Social Movements
Defining Social Movements / Media and Social Movements / The Life Cycle of Social Movements / Verbal Symbols / Visual Images / Social Media and Movements / Social Movement Leaders / An Integrated Model of Social Movements / All Lives Matter: A Countermovement

14. Marketing Communications
Challenges to Persuaders in the Media Age / Branding / Integrated Marketing Communications / Television Advertising / Social Media / Websites / Email and Direct Mail Marketing / Out-of-Home Advertising / Retail Marketing / Public Relations / Relationship Marketing / Advertising and Consumer Culture

15. Interpersonal Persuasion
Interpersonal Persuasion in the Media Age / Interpersonal Persuasion Variables / Compliance Gaining / Sequential-Request Strategies / Personal Selling / Conflict Resolution / Detecting Deception

16. Creating Persuasive Presentations
Presentations in the Media Age / Persuasive Goals / Audience Analysis / Analysis of Topic / Supporting Ideas / Arrangement / An Example: Jasmine Crowe's TED Talk / Using Verbal Symbols / Delivery / Making Strategic Decisions / Multimedia Presentation Aids / Presenting via Mediated Channels