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PROPAGANDA IN FILM Ever since Aristotle outlined his principles of persuasion in Rhetoric these principles of persuasion or compliance have been an important part of human history However the word Propaganda is a relatively new term and is associated with ideological struggles in the twentieth century It was originally used by the Vatican to describe the systematic spread of beliefs values or practices in the seventeenth century and to counteract the ideas of the Protestant reformation In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries when it was used in Europe it was quite neutral and described various political beliefs religious evangelism and commercial advertising An example of the earliest use of political propaganda included the literature of the American Revolution - The Declaration of Independence - written by Thomas Jefferson This was the ultimate form of rational propaganda It was written with the idea of rallying the public around the idea of America as a country and to justify its existence to the world Examples of literary propaganda include the histories of the French author Voltaire the pamphlets of the religious reformer Martin Luther and the works of Karl Marx During the First World War the meaning of the word Propaganda and its neutrality changed With the technological advances with respect to warfare the traditional method of recruiting men for the military was not sufficient For governments public opinion became very important As a result newspapers posters and the cinema the various media of mass communication were used on a daily basis to address the public Consequently propaganda came to be associated with censorship and misinformation because it was used more and more in the form of psychological warfare against the enemy From the beginning of the war both the Germans and British tried to gain the support of the United States Once it had entered the war the United States organized the Committee on Public Information an official propaganda agency to help
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