Thursday, January 28 at 10:00am to 11:00am
How well do you know the origin story of U.S. propaganda and its danger to U.S. public diplomacy? Register for our first virtual program of 2021 with noted scholar and historian, John Maxwell Hamilton on January 28 at 10:00am (Pacific) / 1:00pm (Eastern). Moderating this program is Kathy Fitzpatrick, CPD Faculty Fellow, professor and director of the Zimmerman School of Advertising and Mass Communications at University of South Florida.
For history buffs and public diplomacy practitioners, just one week after the United States entered World War I, President Woodrow Wilson signed a brief executive order creating the Committee on Public Information (CPI). Over the next months the CPI would acquire unprecedented power to shape the views and attitudes of the citizens it was supposed to serve The CPI is the nation’s only ministry of propaganda. It was dismantled at the end of the war. But the CPI’s techniques and mindset established pervasive, systematic propaganda as an instrument of the state in times of peace as well as war.
The CPI story is one of well-meaning progressives who pioneered positive innovations, such as what is now called public diplomacy, but in the process also subverted American democratic processes.
Join us for insight into this colorful, poignant saga, which sheds light on how easily modern presidents can abuse their propaganda power, is John Maxwell Hamilton, author of the new book Woodrow Wilson and the Birth of American Propaganda.