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Everything You Think You Know About Politics.and Why You're Wrong

Jamieson, Kathleen Hall

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ISBN 10: 0465036279 / ISBN 13: 9780465036271
Verlag: Basic Books
Gebraucht Zustand: Fine Softcover
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Titel: Everything You Think You Know About ...

Verlag: Basic Books



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Here, at last, is the book for anyone who ever wondered how the media extravaganzas we call political campaigns really work. Everything You Think You Know About Politics...and Why You're Wrong explores why the American public, seemingly so eager for "unspun" information about candidates and their positions, invariably ends up feeling manipulated by our political process.Challenging the reader with strategically placed quizzes, well-known commentator on the media and politics Kathleen Hall Jamieson surveys the existing public record on voting patterns, campaign promises, and all manner of electioneering and comes up with an engaging mix of analysis, surprising factoids, and political cartoons. This book separates the facts from the convenient fictions that deter Americans from caring about the processes and outcomes of elections.


Here are a few facts Kathleen Hall Jamieson thinks you don't know about politics: most presidents try to keep their campaign promises, most candidate ads tell the truth, campaign rhetoric has not become more negative in recent years, reporters don't represent the content of candidate speeches very well, and attack ads don't depress voter turnout. There's more, but the point is clear: the conventional wisdom about politics is often wrong. Jamieson, a University of Pennsylvania dean and frequent guest on the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, is determined to set the record straight.

Everything You Think You Know About Politics... and Why You're Wrong is messy and disjointed, but in a thoroughly enjoyable way. It's essentially a collection of essays--more than two dozen of them--on narrow-focus topics such as whether local TV or local newspapers do a better job of covering politics, the value of candidate debates, and press bias. Jamieson sometimes shares authorship credits on chapters, and most essays are marked by her determination to confound expectations. Not every chapter will interest every reader, but political junkies will find plenty of material worth perusing on these pages. Sometimes Jamieson's claims are provocative: "The gender gap in political knowledge is real.... Men answer more questions about candidate positions correctly than do women." She also argues strenuously in favor of media soundbites--they really do communicate political information effectively, she believes. Readers who intend to keep pace with the twists and turns of the 2000 election season will do well to thumb through this book: it's written with them especially in mind. Everything You Think You Know About Politics... will boost knowledge about how politics works and why campaigns and the media behave as they do--as well as increase readers' pleasure in observing the whole process. --John J. Miller

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