Propaganda Model

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The Propaganda Model (PM) was developed by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky in their classic book, Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (Parthenon, 1988). They note that:

"The essential ingredients of our propaganda model, or set of news "filters," fall under the following headings: (1) the size, concentrated ownership, owner wealth, and profit orientation of the dominant mass-media firms; (2) advertising as the primary income source of the mass media; (3) the reliance of the media on information provided by government, business, and "experts" funded and approved by these primary sources and agents of power; (4) "flak" as a means of disciplining the media; and (5) "anticommunism" as a national religion and control mechanism. These elements interact with and reinforce one another. The raw material of news must pass through successive filters, leaving only the cleansed residue fit to print. They fix the premises of discourse and interpretation, and the definition of what is newsworthy in the first place, and they explain the basis and operations of what amount to propaganda campaigns." [1]

On December 19, 2008, Dr Andy Mullen is organizing a one day conference at Northumbria University (UK) titled, "Twenty Years at the Margins: The Herman-Chomsky Propaganda Model and Critical Media and Communication Studies, 1988-2008."

Between 15-17 May 2007 a conference was held at the University of Windsor Communication Studies (Windsor, Canada) on the Propaganda Model. The full title of this conference is 20 Years of Propaganda? Critical Discussions & Evidence on the Ongoing Relevance of the Herman & Chomsky Propaganda Model. (Also see Andy Mullen's Conference Report)

In Feburary 2004 there was a one-day conference held in London (UK) titled "Mainstream Media Bias & the 'Propaganda Model'".


Articles supporting the PM

Articles critiquing the PM

  • Charles T. Salmon, "Review of Manufacturing consent, by Herman and Chomsky", Journalism Quarterly, 66 (Summer), 1989, pp.494-95.
  • Robert Entman, "News as propaganda", Journal of Communication, 40, pp.124-127, 1990.
  • Philip Schlesinger, ‘From Production to Propaganda’, in Culture and Power: Media, Culture and Society: A Reader. London: Sage, 1992.
  • Jeff Goodwin, "What's right (and wrong) about left media criticism? Herman and Chomsky's propaganda model", Sociological Forum, Issue Volume 9, Number 1 / March, 1994, pp.101-111.

Books Supporting the PM

  • Jeffery Klaehn (ed.), "Filtering the news: essays on Herman and Chomsky's propaganda model", Black Rose Books, 2005.
  • David Edwards and David Cromwell, Newspeak in the 21st Century (Pluto Press, 2009).
  • Anthony DiMaggio, When Media Goes to War: Hegemonic Discourse, Public Opinion, and the Limits of Dissent (Monthly Review Press, 2010).
  • Jeffery Klaehn (ed.), The Political Economy of Media and Power (New York: Peter Lang, 2010).


Chomsky/Andrew Marr


  • Jeffery Klaehn, "A Critical Review and Assessment of Herman and Chomsky’s ‘Propaganda Model’", European Journal of Communication, 17, pp.147–182, 2002.
  • John Corner, "Debate: The Model in Question – A Response to Klaehn on Herman and Chomsky", European Journal of Communication, 18, pp. 367-375, 2003
  • Jeffery Klaehn, "Debate: Model Construction: Various Other Epistemological Concerns – A Reply to John Corner’s Commentary on the Propaganda Model", European Journal of Communication, 18, pp. 377-383, 2003.

Lang & Lang/Herman & Chomsky

  • Kurt Lang and Gladys Engel Lang, "Noam Chomsky and the Manufacture of Consent for American Foreign Policy." Political Communication, 21, pp.93-101, 2004.
  • Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky, "Reply to Kurt and Gladys Engel Lang", Political Communication, 21, pp.103-107, 2004.
  • Kurt Lang and Gladys Engel Lang, "Response to Herman and Chomsky", Political Communication, 21, pp.109-111, 2004.
  • Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky, "Further Reply to the Langs", Political Communication, 21, pp.113-116, 2004.
  • Kurt Lang and Gladys Engel Lang, "Afterword", Political Communication, Volume 21, Issue 1 January 2004, 21, p.117, 2004.

Transcripts of Medialens interviews with the "liberal" media