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July 06 , 2007

Persuasion and Contemporary Culture: Second Edition


Persuasion in Society introduces readers to the rich tapestry of persuasive technique and scholarship, interweaving rhetorical, critical theory, and social science traditions. This text examines current and classical theory through the lens of contemporary culture, encouraging readers to explore the nature of persuasion and to understand its impact in their lives. Employing a contemporary approach, authors Herbert W. Simons and Jean G. Jones draw from popular culture, mass media, and social media to help readers become informed creators and consumers of persuasive messages.

This introductory persuasion text offers:

  • A broad-based approach to the scope of persuasion, expanding students' understanding of what persuasion is and how it is effected

  • Insights on the diversity of persuasion in action, through such contexts as advertising, marketing, political campaigns, activism and social movements, and negotiation in social conflicts
  • The inclusion of "sender" and "receiver" perspectives, enhancing understanding of persuasion in practice
  • Extended treatment of the ethics of persuasion, featuring opposing views on handling controversial issues in the college classroom for enhanced instruction.
  • Case studies showing how and why people fall for persuasive messages, demonstrating how persuasion works at a cognitive level

Highlights of this second edition include:

    • An extensively revised approach, written with the needs of today's undergraduate students in mind
    • Contemporary examples, selected for relevance, currency, and appeal
    • Updated discussions of theory and research, including cognitive psychology and neuroscience
    • Current illustrations from advertising, politics, social movements, propaganda, and other sources.

To reinforce the topics covered in each chapter, discussion questions, exercises, and key terms are included. Additional resources are available on the Companion Website (, along with materials for instructors, including supplements for lectures and sample exam questions.




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