Personal Influence: The Part Played by People in the Flow of Mass Communications

Free sample

First published in 1955, "Personal Influence" reports the results of a pioneering study conducted in Decatur, Illinois, validating Paul Lazarsfeld's serendipitous discovery that messages from the media may be further mediated by informal "opinion leaders" who intercept, interpret, and diffuse what they see and hear to the personal networks in which they are embedded. This classic volume set the stage for all subsequent studies of the interaction of mass media and interpersonal influence in the making of everyday decisions in public affairs, fashion, movie-going, and consumer behavior. The contextualizing essay in Part One dwells on the surprising relevance of primary groups to the flow of mass communication. Peter Simonson of the University of Pittsburgh has written that "Personal Influence was perhaps the most influential book in mass communication research of the postwar era, and it remains a signal text with historic significance and ongoing reverberations...more than any other single work, it solidified what came to be known as the dominant paradigm in the field, which later researchers were compelled either to cast off or build upon." In his introduction to this fiftieth-anniversary edition, Elihu Katz discusses the theory and methodology that underlie the Decatur study and evaluates the legacy of his coauthor and mentor, Paul F. Lazarsfeld.
Read more
Collapse

About the author

Paul F. Lazarsfeld was a Viennese-born American mathematician, psychologist, and sociologist who immigrated to the United States in 1933. In Vienna he had established an applied social research center, which became a model for others in the United States; the most famous product of the Vienna center is Marienthal (1933) a pioneering study of unemployment in an Austrian village. In the United States, Lazarsfeld became director of a Rockefeller Foundation-supported study of the impact of radio; through this study, communications research was established as a field of social science inquiry. In 1937 Lazarsfeld founded a research center, which became the Bureau of Applied Social Research at Columbia University; he taught at Columbia from 1940 until 1969. Lazarsfeld's research areas included mass communications, voting, latent structure analysis, mathematical models, the history of quantitative research, and the analysis of survey data. His major goal was to find intellectual convergences between the social sciences and the humanities, between concept formation and index construction, and between quantitative and qualitative research. His enthusiasm and originality had an enormous impact on colleagues and students; an annual evening lecture and reception at Columbia provided an opportunity for them to share both vivid memories and current experiences.

Read more
Collapse
Loading...

Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
Read more
Collapse
Published on
Jul 12, 2017
Read more
Collapse
Pages
434
Read more
Collapse
ISBN
9781351500197
Read more
Collapse
Read more
Collapse
Read more
Collapse
Language
English
Read more
Collapse
Genres
Social Science / Media Studies
Social Science / Sociology / General
Read more
Collapse
Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
Read more
Collapse
Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
Read more
Collapse

Reading information

Smartphones and Tablets

Install the Google Play Books app for Android and iPad/iPhone. It syncs automatically with your account and allows you to read online or offline wherever you are.

Laptops and Computers

You can read books purchased on Google Play using your computer's web browser.

eReaders and other devices

To read on e-ink devices like the Sony eReader or Barnes & Noble Nook, you'll need to download a file and transfer it to your device. Please follow the detailed Help center instructions to transfer the files to supported eReaders.
©2019 GoogleSite Terms of ServicePrivacyDevelopersArtistsAbout Google|Location: United StatesLanguage: English (United States)
By purchasing this item, you are transacting with Google Payments and agreeing to the Google Payments Terms of Service and Privacy Notice.