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Propaganda - Essay Example

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They come from two different time periods, and were also for two different goals. The above two posters were recruiting posters from WWI,…
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Prof’s http 24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m4f1qseRid1rwel18o1_500.jpg The above four images are all propaganda posters: the first two from the first World War, and the second two from the Second World War. They come from two different time periods, and were also for two different goals. The above two posters were recruiting posters from WWI, which attempted to influence men to enlist in the armed services. They did so by helping men to define themselves as defenders of the women and children they left behind, creating the myth of strong men defending weak women, which would appeal to the egos of young men. Furthermore, they put significant pressure on women to not try to stop men in their lives from enlisting, by implying that it was unpatriotic to do so. This probably would have been successful, because such tactics tied directly into self-conceptions of masculinity (Jarvis 2004).
The second posters, from WWII, had entirely different goals. They were attempting to influence the population to live in more austere conditions, by sharing and reducing use of resources. They take two different approaches: the Hitler one attempts to invoke guilt, by treating non-austere people as traitors, whereas the second tries to play on positive emotions, telling its viewer that they are making soldiers happy by providing them enough through forgoing extra food. These may have been less successful, because they did not tap in as directly to essential parts of people’s identity (Gullace 2002).
(Sargent, JS (1919). Gassed).
(Nevison (1917). Paths of Glory).
These two paintings are both reactions to the First World War. One of the things that becomes very apparent is the disillusionment artists experienced with the propaganda: these directly counter propaganda by maintaining their similar style (especially “Mustard Gas Victims”), while portraying fundamentally different things: the true experience of war. They fundamentally seemed to need to communicate the true horror of what they had experienced during the First World War, possibly to break the romanticized ideas that had been formed in people’s minds based on war propaganda of the time (Tolson 2010).

These are two modern pieces of propaganda. The first is an advertisement for M&Ms, which directly place on the propaganda of the past, especially Soviet propaganda. The second, with a distinctly modern, clean type face, is an advertisement for the Kony 2012 group, who accepted large amounts of funds to supposedly help find and arrest Kony, and help his victims. One of the interesting things about both of these pieces of propaganda is that they play on their viewer’s desire for connection. The M&M one encourages its viewer to be part of a tribe, in favor of one hero and against another. The Kony 2012 image encourages the reader to “join the revolution,” subtly implying that otherwise they will be left behind. This possibly speaks to a growing need in today’s population to be more deeply connected with each other, possibly because so many traditional connections have eroded.
Works Cited
Jarvis, CS (2004). The Male Body At War: American Masculinity During WWII. Chicago: Northern Illinois Press.
Gullace, N (2002). The Blood of our sons: men, women and the renegotiation of British citizenship during the Great War. London: Macmillan.
Tolson (2010). Art from Different Fronts of World War I. BBC. Read More
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