This volume presents a historical and objective overview of the field of public relations in the past century. It discusses some of the landmark cases in public relations, critiques the philosophies of innovators such as Ivy Lee and Edward Bernays, and explores how corporate public relations has affected economic and political trends. The author concludes by offering long-term alternatives for the future of public relations valuable to both practitioners and corporate executives.
"… a scholarly, thoughtful reassessment of the profession of public relations -- as this book is -- doesn't come along very often, so it should be read and studied by anyone doing business in America today."
—Public Relations Quarterly
"…offers a much needed challenge to the conventional approach to public relations. It is ripe with history and insights for all those interested in public relations and public affairs."
Director of Public Affairs, Koch Industries
Contents: Preface. Introduction: Asking Basic Questions. Voluntarism and Restraint: Early 19th-Century Public Relations. Onto the Gravy Train: 19th-Century Railroad Public Relations. Railroad Executives and The Interstate Commerce Commission. Two-Front War: Early 20th-Century Utility Public Relations. Minimizing Competition Through Public Relations: The Work of Ivy Lee. The Movie Industry Gets a Czar: 1921-1934. Come the Depression: Corporate Public Relations and the National Recovery Administration. "Bringing Order Out of Chaos": The Public Relations Theory of Edward Bernays. The Triumph of Manipulation: Bernays Becomes Publicist No. 1. Public Relations Adds Sugar. Last Stand For Steel. Governmental Relations and Contributions Policies: 1962-1982. Ministers or Panderers: Issues Raised by the PRSA Code of Professional Standards: 1954-1986. The Four-Fold Discipline. Conclusion: A Word to Corporate Executives.
The Routledge Communication Series covers the breadth of the communication discipline, from interpersonal communication to public relations, offering textbooks, handbooks, and scholarly reference materials.