Seeing Spots: A Functional Analysis of Presidential by William L. Benoit

By William L. Benoit

Benoit offers a accomplished research of presidential tv spots from each crusade that used this crucial message shape, from the 1952 crusade throughout the final nationwide crusade in 1996. greater than 1,600 presidential spots are analyzed, from either basic and normal campaigns. Republican, Democratic, and 3rd celebration candidate ads are analyzed. He makes use of the sensible idea of Political crusade Discourse, reading issues in spots as acclaims (self-praise), assaults (criticism), and defenses (responses to attacks). topics are categorized based on subject. every one of those subject matters is damaged down additional (policy: previous deeds, destiny plans, common pursuits; personality: own characteristics, management skill, ideals). Contrasts are made among spots from Republicans and Democrats in addition to 3rd events, incumbents and challengers, and winners and losers. The spots from applicants who led, trailed, or have been in shut races are also contrasted. Spots have gotten extra destructive over the years, Benoit concludes, in either basic and normal campaigns. common campaigns are extra unfavorable than basic campaigns, Democrats are extra unfavorable than Republicans, and challengers are extra destructive than incumbents. There are not any ameliorations among winners and losers. although, applicants who trailed through the crusade have been so much destructive, whereas applicants in shut races have been such a lot confident. a massive research for students and researchers in political communique and American presidential politics.

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Extra resources for Seeing Spots: A Functional Analysis of Presidential Television Advertisements, 1952-1996 (Praeger Series in Political Communication)

Example text

In Nixon’s spots, this factor might have inadvertently undermined confidence in the Eisenhower/Nixon administration. A second theme concerned the qualifications of the candidates, Vice President Nixon and Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, for office. Announcer: Yes, our nation needs Nixon [our nation needs Nixon]. Experience counts. Myler: I’m Mrs. , and I think Nixon and Lodge are the besttrained to win the cold war and to keep the peace. I also like Nixon because he’s a native Californian and knows our problem [Nixon-Lodge].

Johnson: These are the stakes: to make a world in which all God’s children can live, or go into the dark. We must either love each other or we must die. 40 GENERAL CAMPAIGNS Announcer: Vote for President Johnson on November 3 [Vote for President Johnson on November 3]. The stakes are too high for you to stay home. (Johnson, 1964, ‘‘Daisy’’) This spot employed very powerful images to evoke its message: an innocent little child with a flower and the mushroom cloud of an atomic bomb. Johnson provided an equally powerful contrast in his words: Love one another or die.

As in Eisenhower’s spots, this format enacts the theme that Nixon is the one with answers. ’’ These ads may also have, like Eisenhower’s spots, created the impression that citizens had questions that needed answering. In Eisenhower’s advertisements (produced when the Republicans were challenging the Democratic White House), this impression helped him challenge the party in control. In Nixon’s spots, this factor might have inadvertently undermined confidence in the Eisenhower/Nixon administration.

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