Archetypes and Propaganda
Authors: Christo Kaftandjiev
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Some of the major archetypes and their application in various mass communications (in propaganda, advertising, journalism, etc.) are analyzed in the article. At the beginning the notion “archetype” is defined as matrix in our subconscious that makes us to act a certain way from the standpoint of our greatness.
Classification of archetypes is proposed, namely physical (light/darkness; dry/wet); spatial (right/left; up/down; center/periphery; symmetric/asymmetric; inside/outside); biological (man/woman; strong/weak; young/old; beautiful/ugly; big/small; healthy/sick); psychological (honest/villain); social (we/others; freedom/slavery; order/chaos; rich/poor; known/unknown; nature/machine; work/pleasure); cultural (paradise/hell; clean/dirty etc.).
The main characteristics of the different archetypes are unconsciousness, mythologicalness and biological, and cultural conditioning. Archetype light/darkness and archetype left/right are analyzed in details on the basis of many examples of various communications and propaganda.
The reason for their efficiency and very high spread is not so much in unscrupulous communicators – writers, journalists, propagandists, clergy, politicians, etc., but in the natural predisposition of each of us to this type of communication. Archetypes give us a simple answer to all questions, don’t bother us with mental effforts and fit perfectly to the dark side of our subconscious thinking.