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Torches of Freedom: Women and Smoking Propaganda (SociologicalImagesSeeingIsBelieving)

Edward Bernays (1891-1995) is largely considered the founder of public
relations (or “engineering consent,” as he called it) but is not known very
well outside of the marketing and advertising fields. A nephew of Sigmund
Freud, Bernays was the first to theorize that people could be made to want
things they don’t need by appealing to unconscious desires (to be free, to be
successful etc.). Bernays, and propaganda theorist Walter Lippman, were
members of the U.S. Government’s Committee on Public Information (CPI), which
successfully convinced formally isolationist Americans to support entrance
into World War I. While propaganda was commonly thought of as a negative way
of manipulating the masses that should be avoided, Bernays believed that it
was necessary for the functioning of a society, as otherwise people would be
overwhelmed with too many choices. In his words:

> Modern propaganda is a consistent, enduring effort to create or shape events
to influence the relations of the public to an enterprise, idea or group.

[Source: Bernays, _Propaganda_, 1928, p. 52; available here.]

After WWI, Bernays was hired by the American Tobacco Company to encourage
women to start smoking. While men smoked cigarettes, it was not publicly
acceptable ...