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The influencing machine : Brooke Gladstone on the media
Brooke Gladstone
Adult Fiction GLADSTO

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Gladstone, cohost of NPR's On the Media, and noted illustrator Neufeld (A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge) make a formidable pair in this fascinating history of media's influence. Gladstone is both narrator and visual tour guide, popping up throughout Neufeld's panels as both her contemporary self and wittily camouflaged alongside historical figures. From the "Acta Diurna" posted in ancient Rome to the outcries over President Adams's Alien and Sedition Acts and McCarthy's Red Scare, Gladstone traces not only the birth of the press but also its various muzzles. The press will not always stay silent, as she illustrates with Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers, and Woodward and Bernstein's uncovering of the Watergate scandal. Yet government opacity still abounds, and Gladstone pointedly wonders if secrecy really makes us safer. One of the most intriguing sections deals with bias, a term tossed around so often it's become almost meaningless. Gladstone points to seven key biases that cognizant media consumers should worry about: commercial, bad news, status quo, access, visual, narrative, and fairness. These dovetail nicely into a frank discussion of war journalism, which highlights Neufeld's considerable skills, with each panel bursting with situational details. Gladstone's is an indispensible guide to our ever-evolving media landscape that's brought vividly to life. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

From Library Journal:

"In a world of ceaseless distractions, ideas that grab you by the eyeballs are more likely to stick," Gladstone noted in her proposal for this graphic novel (New York Observer, 5/26/09). Indeed, the result is as much a public service announcement for the power of comics as it is a disquisition on media in general. Like a chatty but interesting poli-sci professor, Gladstone's lines-on-paper avatar takes us through media history, source accuracy (or not), journalist impartiality (or not), bias (seven kinds), dilemmas relating to war reporting, objectivity (or not), disclosure, tricks the mind plays on understanding news stories, and how the media mirror ourselves in all of our human diversity now and into the future. Neufeld's black-and-white art, enlivened with teal wash, enhances Gladstone's points effectively, although without the compelling appeal of his lauded A.D. New Orleans: After the Deluge. Gladstone has been cohost of NPR's On the Media since 2000. VERDICT This comprehensive overview of media history and issues-responsibly referenced in over 200 detailed notes-should be required reading for nearly everybody over age ten, media students, and plain ole citizens, especially. Highly recommended.-M.C. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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