Edward Bernays  

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Edward Bernays, a nephew of Sigmund Freud, was influenced by Gustave Le Bon and Wilfred Trotter . In his book Propaganda he declared that a major feature of democracy was the manipulation of the mass mind by media and advertising.

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Edward Louis Bernays (November 22, 1891March 9, 1995) is considered one of the fathers of the field of public relations along with Ivy Lee. Combining the ideas of Gustave Le Bon and Wilfred Trotter on crowd psychology with the psychoanalytical ideas of his uncle, Sigmund Freud, Bernays was one of the first to attempt to manipulate public opinion using the psychology of the subconscious.

He felt this manipulation was necessary in society, which he regarded as irrational and dangerous as a result of the 'herd instinct' that Trotter had described. Adam Curtis's award-winning 2002 documentary for the BBC, The Century of the Self, pinpoints Bernays as the originator of modern public relations.

He was named one of the 100 most influential Americans of the 20th century by Life magazine.

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