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Posters and Election Propaganda

A blog dedicated to the examination of communications in election campaigns, with a focus on posters

Posted by Steven Seidman at 1:21PM   |  Add a comment
Chris Christie for President, Inc., Bumper Sticker, 2015

About a week ago, the Chris Christie campaign issued a negative bumper sticker—directed at Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, who is running for her party's presidential nomination. Christie is running for the Republican Party's presidential nomination.

It proclaims "No Way in Hill" in red, white, and blue, and incorporates both the Clinton 2016 and Obama 2008 logos.

It is quite uncommon for national campaigns to issue such negative bumper stickers and posters these days. 

Can anyone recall the last time this happened?


Posted by Steven Seidman at 10:54AM   |  Add a comment
Rand Paul Poster, 2015

Here's an interesting and different poster, available for purchase on the Rand Paul for President Website for the clever price of $20.16.

Paul is running for the 2016 Republican Party nomination in the United States.

From his Website: "We need a president who can see clearly, so why not start with one that knows vision and sight better than any other candidate. Dr. Rand Paul is an ophthalmologist (eye doctor), serving in the US Senate. Professionally, he has corrected the vision of thousands and now will do the same thing in the White House.. and we're not talking about a new prescription for President Obama."

 


Posted by Steven Seidman at 10:37AM   |  Add a comment
Hillary Clinton 2016 Logo

Hillary Clinton's campaign just unveiled its new logo. Like George W. Bush in 2004 (at least in one poster), the candidate is identified with one letter in the design. Like most U.S. election logos, it is red, white, and blue. Like President Obama's 2012 logo, it says her campaign's goal for America is to "move forward" (albeit with an arrow, as well as a word). 

And, like the Obama campaigns in 2008 and 2012, her Web site and social media pages incorporate the logo in an attempt to rebrand her as a candidate with a fresh message, directed at all Americans, while her rollout video targets the middle class, particularly women.

Her new logo is much simpler and more "modern" than her 2008 design. To read my take on her 2008 logo, go to my September 3, 2008 blog post. Back then, I characterized it as "a fairly conventional logo design," which was also patriotic, and slightly stylized and simplified (compared to other political logos).

That being said, her 2016 logo has already generated numerous comments. The positive ones like its simplicity, colors, and "forward" symbolism. The negative comments focus on it being similar to other designs (including "go this way to the hospital"), allegedly poor artistry, and believe that the message is confusing. To read some of opinions, click here.

Of course, the best U.S. presidential campaign logo was probably Obama's 2008 design. To read what I said about that logo, go to my August 22, 2008 blog post.


Posted by Steven Seidman at 12:30PM   |  Add a comment
Labour Party Minibus (2015)

Women voters have been targeted in British parliamentary elections since 1918, after women over the age of 30 were enfranchised, and, more actively, since 1929, after the voting age for women was lowered to 21 the previous year. In fact, the 1929 election is known as "The Flapper Election." In that year, a poster showed Labour leader James Ramsay MacDonald with a young woman dressed as a flapper. Another 1929 Labour Party poster illustrated both men and women workers lining up at a polling place, with a closed factory nearby.

Soon, however, most British posters showed women in more traditional roles. For example, a poster in the 1930s showed a woman holding a child, with the appeal “Mothers—Vote Labour” and a Conservative Party poster in that decade depicted an elderly woman, above the statement, “We must think of our savings and our home. That’s why I’m voting for the National Government” (in which the Conservatives would be dominant).

Women with their families, especially with children, were the predominant images for females in posters throughout the next few decades. 

Thereafter, most election posters showed women as voters, workers, and candidates. However, in the recent national campaign, Labour appealed directly to women to "stop politics being a “men-only club,” in a "Woman-to-Woman" campaign, which features a pink minibus. The party has been criticized for the "Barbie doll" color of the bus.

For more on British election campaigns, read the book, Posters, Propaganda, and Persuasion in Election Campaigns Around the World and Through History.


Posted by Steven Seidman at 9:44AM   |  Add a comment
Posters with the name of the candidate glowing in the dark. (ITSUKI PRINT CO.)

Japanese voters go to the polls on December 14 to elect members of the Lower House of Representatives.

Unique "luminous" posters are going up. They are printed with a technology that allows the poster's paint to "store light during the daytime and illuminates for a few hours after dark," according to The Japan Times. There are also posters that reflect automobile headlights.

 


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