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Name Calling and Labelling


Name-calling and labelling are techniques with which even children are familiar. In propagandistic ventures, however, the systematic association between a people (or country, ideal, etc.) with a negative label creates a prejudice, and as such negative opinions will be formulated. The technique leads to the automatic association between the targeted entity and a negative label; this becomes a substitute for critical thinking and a careful examination of actual facts.

Example of Propaganda: In this anti-German poster, all of German culture is distilled to a barbaric ape (‘militarism’) coming to trample on American waters. Although comedic in nature, the message is clear: “Destroy this mad brute” by enlisting, or this will be your future.

 Propaganda - Name-Calling - Anti-German WWI propaganda Mad Brute