Publisher description for Persuasive communication / James B. Stiff.


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A vast literature now exists on persuasive messages and their effects however, most reviews of this literature reflect either the contributions of communication scholars or those from social psychologists. Providing a cogent, thoughtful integration of research from both fields, James B. Stiff's new text examines contemporary models of persuasion and connects them with classic approaches and theories of persuasion.
Adopting a broad definition of persuasion, the book examines several original avenues of persuasion research. With rare insight, the author reviews essential characteristics of persuasion and discusses how these characteristics are effectively used in persuasive transactions. Each chapter describes a typical study in the research area, summarizes the most important findings, and draws substantive conclusions about the relevant literature. Traditional theories are thoroughly reviewed at points where they inform the discussion of a particular substantive issue, rather than being presented in rote fashion.
Ideally structured for course work, the book defines several essential concepts and draws distinctions among types of persuasive activity, reviews the research methods most common to persuasion investigations, and considers the conditions under which attitudes predict behavior and behaviors affect attitudes. Core features of persuasive transactions, including the characteristics of persuasive messages, the important characteristics of message receivers, and persuasive settings are later explored. The author then examines contemporary models of persuasive communication: social-cognitive models, models of interpersonal influence, and models that have been effectively applied in media influence campaigns.
Intended for students who have a basic understanding of quantitative research methods in the social sciences, this volume is ideal as a primary text for upper-level undergraduate as well as first-year graduate courses in persuasion. It illuminates the work of scholars in communication and social psychology, and is useful for professionals in legal fields, advertising, marketing, and politics, as it provides specific examples from each of these areas and examines models that can be easily applied.


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