Academic journal article Military Review

Persuasion and Power: The Art of Strategic Communication

Academic journal article Military Review

Persuasion and Power: The Art of Strategic Communication

Article excerpt

PERSUASION AND POWER: The Art of Strategic Communication, James P. Farewell, Georgetown University Press, Washington, DC, 2012, 270 pages, $29.95

AMERICA'S ABILITY TO market everything from McDonald's to the latest fad around the world is unparalleled in history, and yet, it is challenged when it comes to marketing itself. James P. Farewell, an internationally recognized expert in strategic communication and cyber warfare, has written an insightful work on what strategic communication is and why we as a nation are failing at it.

Farewell explores the U.S. government's elusive quest to engage foreign audiences throughout the world. It often finds itself in an ineffective and inefficient react mode to state and nonstate actors alike. An inability to communicate strategically reflects lack of emphasis by U.S. senior leaders, parochial turf wars between agencies, and the lack of a single comprehensive approach. Farewell describes the inane view held by many in the U.S. government, especially in the Department of Defense, that strategic communication is a process rather than a capability or an art. Farewell counters that it is partly a process, but we need to think of it more as an art of communication. The inability to communicate strategically is further exacerbated because the Department of Defense categorizes strategic communication in terms of inform and influence. …

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