Matching Items (7)

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Liberation or Propaganda: Transhistorical and Transcultural Applications of Participatory Theatre

Description

Theatre for social change, or more generally, theatre that addresses political issues in a community, often leans on participation as a way of democratizing the theatrical space and opening the

Theatre for social change, or more generally, theatre that addresses political issues in a community, often leans on participation as a way of democratizing the theatrical space and opening the conversational floor to more than just the traditional creative team. In practice, participatory theatre nonetheless can and has been used as a tool of propaganda rather than a tool for democratic social change. These seemingly-incompatible applications of participation in political theatre present a problem for those who want to use it: what versions of participatory theatre provide a space for other voices, and what versions of participatory theatre ostensibly appear to, but ultimately only function as tools to justify an ideology? To explore this question I examine a common form of participatory theatre: interactive theatrical trials. Specifically, I analyze the agitation trials of post-revolutionary and early Soviet Russia using Augusto Boal's frameworks from his devlopment of Theatre of the Oppressed.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020-12

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Peace and Propaganda: A Look into the Self-Serving Characteristics of the Peace Corps

Description

The American government does not come without its fair share of problems, though it will often utilize different forms of propaganda in order to distract from those problems. This thesis

The American government does not come without its fair share of problems, though it will often utilize different forms of propaganda in order to distract from those problems. This thesis sought to expose the Peace Corps as one of the most overlooked, but successful, forms of America’s propaganda. Research questions created for this study are as follows: What were the driving forces behind the Peace Corps’ creation? What are the qualifications necessary for a host country to partner with the Peace Corps, and what relevant assistance did the Peace Corps provide for these host countries? Using sources that retold the Peace Corps’ history, spoke on hegemony, and imperialism, as well as statements from Peace Corps volunteers, the study conducted over months answered the questions above. Results revealed that the Peace Corps ultimately provided more benefit for the United States than the host countries and is a modern-day example of America’s soft-power imperialism.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05

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The Origins of America’s Longest War: Drug Use, Racism, Propaganda, and Prohibition Before the War on Drugs

Description

The United States’ War on Drugs declared in 1971 by President Richard Nixon and revamped by President Reagan in the 1980s has been an objectively failed initiative with origins based

The United States’ War on Drugs declared in 1971 by President Richard Nixon and revamped by President Reagan in the 1980s has been an objectively failed initiative with origins based in racism and oppression. After exploring the repercussions of this endeavor for societies and individuals around the world, global researchers and policymakers have declared that the policies and institutions created to fight the battle have left devastation in their wake. Despite high economic and social costs, missed opportunities in public health and criminal justice sectors, and increasing limits on our personal freedoms, all the measures taken to eradicate drug abuse and trafficking have been unsuccessful. Not only that, but militarized police tactics, mass incarceration, and harsh penalties that stifle opportunities for rehabilitation, growth, and change disproportionately harm poor and minority communities. <br/>Because reform in U.S. drug policy is badly needed, the goals of America’s longest war need to be reevaluated, implications of the initiative reexamined, and alternative strategies reconsidered. Solutions must be propagated from a diverse spectrum of contributors and holistic understanding through scientific research, empirical evidence, innovation, public health, social wellbeing, and measurable outcomes. But before we can know where we should be headed, we need to appreciate how we got to where we are. This preliminary expository investigation will explore and outline the history of drug use and prohibition in the United States before the War on Drugs was officially declared. Through an examination of the different patterns of substance use, evolving civil tolerance of users, racially-charged anti-drug misinformation/propaganda campaigns, and increasingly restrictive drug control policies, a foundation for developing solutions and strengths-based strategies for drug reform will emerge.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05

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Hijrah to the Islamic State: A Preliminary Analysis

Description

In this thesis, I conduct a preliminary analysis of the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham's travel manual-cum-propaganda ebook Hijrah to the Islamic State, which has been used by people

In this thesis, I conduct a preliminary analysis of the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham's travel manual-cum-propaganda ebook Hijrah to the Islamic State, which has been used by people from various parts of the world attempting to enter Syria and join the terrorist organization. Using techniques from discourse and propaganda analysis I examine how the author of the text uses discursive resources to construct the reader of the text, the author's expectations for the reader, and the act of traveling to Syria. I then use news articles from varying organizations as well as the Islamic State-produced periodical magazine Dabiq to locate the document within the context of Islamic State affairs and propaganda. Subsequently, I show that the use of discursive resources is consistent with the ethos espoused in Dabiq, and in addition to serving as a guide to entering Syria Hijrah to the Islamic State is also a soft introduction into the radical belief systems of the terrorist group itself.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-05

Detecting Propaganda Bots on Twitter Using Machine Learning

Description

Propaganda bots are malicious bots on Twitter that spread divisive opinions and support political accounts. This project is based on detecting propaganda bots on Twitter using machine learning.

Propaganda bots are malicious bots on Twitter that spread divisive opinions and support political accounts. This project is based on detecting propaganda bots on Twitter using machine learning. Once I began to observe patterns within propaganda followers on Twitter, I determined that I could train algorithms to detect these bots. The paper focuses on my development and process of training classifiers and using them to create a user-facing server that performs prediction functions automatically. The learning goals of this project were detailed, the focus of which was to learn some form of machine learning architecture. I needed to learn some aspect of large data handling, as well as being able to maintain these datasets for training use. I also needed to develop a server that would execute these functionalities on command. I wanted to be able to design a full-stack system that allowed me to create every aspect of a user-facing server that can execute predictions using the classifiers that I design.
Throughout this project, I decided on a number of learning goals to consider it a success. I needed to learn how to use the supporting libraries that would help me to design this system. I also learned how to use the Twitter API, as well as create the infrastructure behind it that would allow me to collect large amounts of data for machine learning. I needed to become familiar with common machine learning libraries in Python in order to create the necessary algorithms and pipelines to make predictions based on Twitter data.
This paper details the steps and decisions needed to determine how to collect this data and apply it to machine learning algorithms. I determined how to create labelled data using pre-existing Botometer ratings, and the levels of confidence I needed to label data for training. I use the scikit-learn library to create these algorithms to best detect these bots. I used a number of pre-processing routines to refine the classifiers’ precision, including natural language processing and data analysis techniques. I eventually move to remotely-hosted versions of the system on Amazon web instances to collect larger amounts of data and train more advanced classifiers. This leads to the details of my final implementation of a user-facing server, hosted on AWS and interfacing over Gmail’s IMAP server.
The current and future development of this system is laid out. This includes more advanced classifiers, better data analysis, conversions to third party Twitter data collection systems, and user features. I detail what it is I have learned from this exercise, and what it is I hope to continue working on.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019-05

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Nationalism and Its Discontents: Transformations of Identity in Contemporary Russian Music on and off the Web

Description

This dissertation presents a multifaceted examination of the complex sociopolitical contexts of contemporary popular and classical music in Russia. By attending to the competing expectations of Russian creators, government officials,

This dissertation presents a multifaceted examination of the complex sociopolitical contexts of contemporary popular and classical music in Russia. By attending to the competing expectations of Russian creators, government officials, impresarios, critics, and listeners, it examines how contemporary musical artists have navigated the shifting nationalistic and popular moods of the past two decades.

I argue that popular music artists Olga Kormukhina and Polina Gagarina, composer Rodion Shchedrin, and the Mariinsky Theater have transformed the works of past artists, including Viktor Tsoi and Nikolai Leskov, updating them according to a popular demand for patriotic works that the Russian state has cultivated through its media outlets and official pronouncements on cultural policy. Other rock musicians (Konstantin Kinchev and the band Bi-2) have also transformed their political identities to match the present-day demands and expectations of either Russian officialdom or their particular Russian audiences. With the exception of Bi-2 (an ambiguous counterexample), all of these transformations have led to greater associations with nationalistic sentiments or fervent support for state agendas in the contemporary geopolitical arena.

Exploring the wide variety of styles and genres in this dissertation required a methodological versatility involving archival research, reception history, the analysis of musical scores and sound recordings, an examination of prose and poetic texts, and close study of visual imagery in music videos and onstage. The approach to reception history is the most groundbreaking, for it considers a wide range of digital sources, including blogs and social media comment threads, and makes use of language partner apps to augment the pool of informants, allowing conversation with Russians living outside the limited geographical range (St. Petersburg and Moscow) considered by previous studies. This holistic approach to contemporary reception history helps us to better understand how Russian audiences from diverse regions perceive these ongoing transformations.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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An analysis of two World War II propaganda films [electronic resource]: the German Feuertaufe and the Polish-British This is Poland

Description

At the beginning of the 20th century, the introduction of the motion picture as a medium changed the way people disseminate information between each other and to the masses. The

At the beginning of the 20th century, the introduction of the motion picture as a medium changed the way people disseminate information between each other and to the masses. The magnitude of this change was supplemented and amplified first by, the addition of sound, then color, and finally (possibly most importantly) the invention of the technology to send and receive motion picture signals along with their corresponding sound tracks. This would eventually all be combined in the production of the first television sets. Some of the most stunning illustrations of the power brought about by this medium can be observed in the way that Germany was able to utilize film during (and before) World War II. The idea of using cinema as a propaganda tool led to the creation of UFA during WWI (1914-1918). Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels' fascination with film and its propaganda potential led to the development of many successful public communication techniques and numerous tactics used to influence the people's thoughts and actions. This thesis provides background information pertaining to the outbreak of World War II including the German propaganda machine, and examines the role that motion pictures played in the distribution of anti-Polish messages before and during the early stages of the war. It focuses specifically on the film Feuertaufe as an example illustrating six major tenants of Nazi film propaganda namely: oversimplification, appeal to emotions, harnessing the power of the visual image, intentional blurring of lines between entertainment and facts, repetition, and the use of graphics combined with music. Next, this essay explores how each of the abovementioned characteristics were used by the Poles and the British in their pro-Polish film This is Poland in order to sway public opinion and spread messages aligned with their political views respectively. This thesis concludes by stressing the importance of being aware of these techniques so that one may be able to separate fact from hype, and by looking at the possible utilization of the six tenants in the years to come as smart mobile-devices usher in yet another metamorphosis of the art of information distribution.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014