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English Language & Linguistics

English Language



Advertising normally seeks to persuade. However some advertising aims only to make a link between something positive and its own product or service, in order to put itself in a good light by association. A nuclear power station might associate itself with fine views of the countryside. It will hope to acquire positive connotations by association.

Propaganda works in a related way, sometimes to make a link between something and a set of associations which might be positive (USA linked to bravery and technological achievement by astronauts) or negative (Nazi Germany associating Jews with poverty, crime and evil).

Our consumer driven society means it is difficult to avoid advertising, but this makes it all the more important for consumers to be aware of and critical of the influence it may have on our behaviour and attitudes.

Advertising seeks to change our way of thinking.

Look at these examples:

Bikes! - extracts from a brochure advertising bicycles

Chips! - extract from a packet of potato crisps and Tapenade, a description of a red pepper paste.

Popular Features of Advertising Language

Propaganda - an insidious form of persuasion. See also the various names for Daesh / Islamic State.

Wine Blurbs - persuasion of the taste of wines

Also visit the Advertising Slogan Hall of Fame. This presents famous slogans, clips of TV ads and some analysis of what makes an effective advertising slogan. Which product proclaimed "Melts in your mouth, not in your hand"? One of the three correct answers is here!



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