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Promoting Propaganda

Published: May 14, 2014 (Issue # 1810)



Photo: Bigarthouse.ru

(Victory Day) used tobe my favorite Russian holiday. I would always tear up when I saw theveterans, covered fromneck towaist inmedals andribbons, marching proudly across Red Square. Andfor afew years, when we were all friends, I liked watching theother Allied veterans march along with their former Soviet comrades-in-arms.

This year, with another war raging, thefighter jets buzzing my apartment house during rehearsals forthe air show seem creepy, not cool. Andthe drumbeat of (propaganda) is like nothing I have ever seen or heard before.

Andso I find myself thinking constantly about aword I thought I could put onthe dusty top shelf ofmy mind andforget. came toRussian fromthe Latin propaganda, defined as (that which is tobe disseminated). Theword appeared inthe 17th-century Catholic Church, which founded agroup topropagate thefaith tothe unenlightened andunfaithful.

Andthat is pretty much what still does only thefaith changes over time andplace.

Most ofthe time, theword has anegative connotation inRussian. Infact, ina dictionary ofpolitical terminology, theword is defined inpart like this: (Propaganda was theterm used todescribe attempts bytotalitarian regimes tocompletely subordinate science andany other knowledge tothe interests ofstate policy).

So you find usage like this: , - (Thanks tothe ham-fisted propaganda, people were certain that they could only get thetruth fromthe radio voices [of America, etc.]).

But not all theways andmeans of and (to propagandize) are bad: , , . (A doctor should promote ahealthy lifestyle, ofcourse andby example, too).

and can also be used forthe promotion ofcommercial endeavors or products: , (He did everything he could topromote theMoscow Virtuosi).

Now this is usually (promotion), done bythe noun (promoter) through theverb (to promote).

Question: ? (How do you promote anintellectual book?) Answer: Byusing anative Russian verb like (to advance, promote).

(I will promote your book insocial media). This kind of (promotion) seems tobe more covert than, say, (to advertise) or (carry out anad campaign).

Andall ofit comes under thebig umbrella of (marketing), which can be (commercial), (social) or political: (Political marketing inRussia is programming theelectorates behavior).

Andwe know how you do that: . Here we go again.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Tuesday, Oct. 21


The Environment, Health and Safety Committee of AmCham convenes this morning at 9 a.m. in the organizations office.


Take the opportunity to pick the brains of Dmitry V. Krivenok, the deputy director of the Economic Development Agency of the Leningrad region, and Mikhail D. Sergeev, the head of the Investment Projects Department, during the meeting with them this morning hosted by SPIBA. RSVP for the event by emailing office@spiba.ru before Oct. 17 if you wish to attend.


Improve your English at Interactive English, the British Book Centers series of lessons on vocabulary and grammar in an informal atmosphere. Starting at 6 p.m., each month draws attention to different topics in English, with the topic for this months lessons being visual arts.



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