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

MERICANS' ABILITY TO market everything from McDonald's to the latest worldwide fad is unparalleled in history. Yet, the United States is challenged when it comes to marketing itself. James Farewell, an internationally recognized expert in stra- tegic communication and cyberwarfare, 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 vain quest to engage foreign audiences throughout the world. The United States often finds itself in "the react mode" in response to more effective and efficient efforts of state and nonstate actors. The nation's inability to commu- nicate strategically reflects a lack of emphasis by our senior leaders, parochial turf wars between agencies, and the absence of a single comprehensive approach. Farewell describes the view held by many in the U.S. government, especially in the Department of Defense, that strategic communication is a process rather than an art. Farewell counters that communication it is partly a process but we need to think of it more as an art. The Department, moreover, exacerbates its strategic communication problems by conceiving of strategic communication in terms of inform and influ- ence. …

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