Thomas Merton on Modern Propaganda

“[In] an evolved society there are no innocent victims of propaganda. Propaganda succeeds because men want it to succeed. It works on minds because those minds want to be worked on. Its conclusions bring apparent light and satisfaction because that is the kind of satisfaction that people are longing for. It leads them to actions for which they are already half prepared: all they ask is that these actions be justified. If war propaganda succeeds it is because people want war, and only need a few good reasons to justify their own desire.”

— Thomas Merton, Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander (1966)

Advertisements

4 Comments

  1. I was a Roman Catholic seminarian in my youth, and though I happily left the notions of priesthood behind, Merton’s writings deeply influenced me and my notions of justice. Thanks for reminding me of his wondrous writing and vision.

    Like

Add Your Comments, Links, and Recommendations

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s