ERIC Number: ED219751
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Jul
Reference Count: 0
An Examination of Prepropaganda and Political Change in Afghanistan during a National Crisis--September, 1979-January, 1980.
Logan, Robert; Hayes, James
Jacques Ellul defined "prepropaganda" as the subtle and sophisticated use of news services to improve an authoritarian government's public image. Because its value is directly related to its being used sparingly, he predicted that prepropaganda would increase when an authoritarian government felt threatened and decrease when it once more felt secure. The sovereignty threatening events in Afghanistan from September 1979 until January 1980 provided an opportunity to test Ellul's theory. According to the theory, the frequency and the bias of the prepropaganda directed at Hafizullah Amin, Afghanistan's ruler, by Bakhtar, the official news service, should have changed according to the vicissitudes of the situation, being favorable during the planning of the Soviet Union's invasion and unfavorable after that invasion took place. Content analysis of the favorable and unfavorable adjectives used to describe Amin in articles supplied by Bakhtar for editions of the "Kabul Times" (originally written in Farsi and translated into English) provided the data for the study. Results of the data analysis confirmed Ellul's theory. In addition, the paper's use of photographs and headlines followed the same pattern. The results seem to imply that changes in prepropaganda within authoritarian news services may reveal the direction of changing political environments to outside analysts. (JL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Afghanistan; Ellul (Jacques); Media Role
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Education in Journalism (65th, Athens, OH, July 25-28, 1982).