The Role of Media in Shaping and Manipulating the American Public Opinion

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Abstract This research paper involves a deep interpretation of media’s role in constructing the American public opinion, and explains the different methods that media use to brainwash and influencepeople’s perception of issues. The purpose of this work is to understand how the disseminated information by media control the public’s reactions and interpretations of events that happen in their daily life. The study seeks to find out to what extent media influence the public’s perceptions of 9/11 events and Chavez coup, as most important events that show how the media propagandists manipulate and brainwash the people in order to elicit certain attitudes or stances vis-à-vis controversial issues. This work is divided into three chapters: The first one is a representation of the historical background of public opinion in general and American public opinion in specific, in which it becomes a matter of debate in the period of the two World wars and the way it should be measured. The second chapter is an introduction of the fourth estate, which is the main source of news, and acts as a link between the government and the public, and it helps this latter to be well-informed. However, most of the information presented to the public are made by propagandists, who are manipulate people to serve the elite’s desires. The last chapter is an attempt to identify the relationship between American public opinion and media and further explain the media strategies of shaping the opinions of people during major events, which include wars and foreign crises.