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Volume 31 • Number 1

January 2017



Beware of Schools Bearing Gifts: Miseducation and Trojan Horse Propaganda

by Olúfẹmi Táíwò

Recent publication How Propaganda Works uses flawed ideologies to explain how propaganda works. I introduce the system of miseducation as an alternative, adapted from Carter G. Woodson's The Mis-Education of the Negro. Miseducation explains instances of propaganda considered in the book but also another kind altogether, which I term Trojan horse propaganda. I consider the possibility that flawed social structures can themselves exert propagandistic effects, independent of any particular pattern of doxastic uptake by the individuals in that society. If so, this would suggest moving from analyses of how propaganda affects individuals' beliefs and toward analyses of propaganda's practical effects, and would count in favor of activist approaches that make strategic use of sites of epistemic power.

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ISSN: 2152-0542