Public Relations and the History of Ideas: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Public Relations and the History of Ideas

1st Edition

By Simon Moore


146 pages

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Hardback: 9780415634540
pub: 2015-01-02
eBook (VitalSource) : 9780203094396
pub: 2014-04-16
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This innovative book explores ten great works, by well-known thinkers and orators, whose impact has been intellectual, practical and global. Most of the works significantly precede public relations as a phrase or profession, but all are in no doubt about the force of planned public communication, and the power that lies with those managing the process.

The works are stimulating and diverse and were written to address some of society’s biggest challenges. Although not traditionally the focus of public relations research, they have all had a global impact as communicators and as the foundation for fundamental ideas, from spirituality to war and economics to social justice. Each addresses the implications of structured communication between organizations and societies, and scrutinizes or advocates activities that are now central to PR and its morality. They could not ignore PR, and PR cannot ignore them.

This book will be essential reading for researchers and scholars in public relations and communication and will also be of inter-disciplinary interest to study in sociology, literature, philosophy, politics and history.


'Simon Moore’s book offers a full-bloodied rescue of the field from the narrow confines of managing relationships – and trying to quantify them – by reminding us that PR has to relate to the ideas of the time. As this can’t be done without knowledge of important thinking from other times, Public Relations and the History of Ideas offers an excellent primer that ranges across history, space, different fields of thought, and applied communication practice. It offers overdue encouragement to PR scholars and students alike to examine the essential and relevant cultural capital stockpiled in writings by key figures from the past.'

David McKie, University of Waikato, New Zealand

'More than a view of PR as descending from thought leaders, Moore offers accounts of PR as articulated by notable figures within various political, socio-economic and spiritual contexts. His observations on how power and autonomy have informed "managed public communication" enrich our understanding of the reality-shaping persistence of PR.'

Burton St. John III, Old Dominion University, USA

Editor of Pathways to Public Relations: Histories of Practice and Profession

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Public Relations in the History of Ideas Chapter 2. Virtuous PR - Confucius, Analects Chapter 3. Noble Falsehoods and PR - Plato, The Republic Chapter 4. The Problem of Perfection - Al-Farabi, On the Perfect State Chapter 5. PR and the Subjugation of Reason - Luther, The Ninety-five theses Chapter 6. Willpower and the Expansion of PR - Clausewitz, On War Chapter 7. PR, Scientific Inquiry and Utopian Mysticism - Marx & Engels, Communist Manifesto Chapter 8. Proofing Against Puffing - Mill, On Liberty Chapter 9. Modern Campaign Management? - Gandhi, An Autobiography, or the Story of My Experiments with Truth Chapter 10. Accepting and Fearing PR - Hayek, The Road to Serfdom Chapter 11. PR’s Choice: Creating Audiences or Discovering Individuals - Jung, The Undiscovered Self Chapter 12. PR’s Future: Irrational or Rational? Magical or scientific? Individual or collective?

About the Author

Simon Moore is Associate Professor and Chair in Information Design and Corporate Communication at Bentley University, USA.

About the Series

Routledge New Directions in Public Relations & Communication Research

Current academic thinking about PR and related communication is a lively, expanding marketplace of ideas and many scholars believe that it’s time for its radical approach to be deepened. Routledge New Directions in PR & Communication Research is the forum of choice for this new thinking. Its key strength is its remit, publishing critical and challenging responses to continuities and fractures in contemporary PR thinking and practice, tracking its spread into new geographies and political economies. It questions its contested role in market-orientated, capitalist, liberal democracies around the world, and examines its invasion of all media spaces, old, new, and as yet unenvisaged. The New Directions series has already published and commissioned diverse original work on: PR’s influence on Israeli and Palestinian nation building; its origins in the history of ideas; a Jungian approach to its ethics and professionalism; global perspectives on its professional practice; PR as an everyday language for everyone; as emotional labour; as communication in conflicted societies, and its relationships to cooperation, justice and paradox. We actively invite new contributions and offer academics a welcoming place for the publication of their analyses of a universal, persuasive mind-set that lives comfortably in old and new media around the world.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Public Relations