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An outline of Trumpian psychotechnics
Paul K. Jones

Adorno identified. The combination of paranoia and projection, both highly evident in the rally extract, also leads to a kind of overproduction of conspiracy discourses; and an apparent personal susceptibility to them, if his ‘retweets’ are taken as a guide here – or the role of the Ukraine conspiracy theory in his impeachment. In short, Trumpian psychotechnics has evident ‘new’ features but their dynamic uncannily resembles that identified by the Institute. Notes

in Critical theory and demagogic populism

Critical theory and demagogic populism provides a detailed analysis of the relevance of the Frankfurt School’s work to understanding contemporary populism. It draws on the research that the Institute for Social Research conducted concerning domestic demagogues during its period of ‘exile’ in the USA. The book argues that the figure of the demagogue has been neglected in both orthodox ‘populism studies’ and in existing critical approaches to populism such as that of Ernesto Laclau. Demagogic ‘capture’ of populist movements and their legacies is thus a contingent prospect for ‘left’ and ‘right’ populist movements. An account of ‘modern demagogy’ is thus detailed, from the Institute’s own dedicated demagogy studies through to their dialogue with Weber’s work on charismatic leadership, the US liberal critique of demagogy and Freud’s group psychology. The Institute’s linkage of ‘modern demagogy’ to the culture industry speaks to the underestimation in ‘populism studies’ of the significance of two other ‘modern phenomena. The first is ‘cultural populism’ – the appeal to a folkloric understanding of ‘the people’ and/or ‘their culture’. The second is the pivotal role of modern means of communication, not only in the recent prominence of social media but demagogic exploitation of all media since the rise of literacy and the widening of the suffrage in the nineteenth century. The dialectical dimensions of these processes are also highlighted in reconstructing the Institute’s work and in extending these analyses through to the present. The book so concludes by weighing up potential counter-demagogic forces within and beyond the culture industry.

Paul K. Jones

As Adorno later put it: ‘The devices pointed out in McClung Lee's book on Father Coughlin … are only elements of a much farther-reaching pattern of behaviour.’  56 This ‘psychotechnics’, as he often called it, also went beyond the pursuit of ‘interest’ ( cui bono ) as the alternative to the critique of ideology portrayed in the citation from Aspects of Sociology above. Indeed, Adorno even ties one of these ‘farther-reaching patterns’ to one of the Lees’ devices in order to elucidate a key

in Critical theory and demagogic populism
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Adorno, Theodor W. ‘Introduction to Prophets of Deceit’ (1949, previously unpublished)
Paul K. Jones

behind advertising that it approaches violence. Much has also been borrowed from fanatic religious revivalism, promoting an ecstasy which is relished as such and unrelated to any concrete content, while rigid, dogmatic stereotypes, as e.g. the distinction between the damned and the saved ones, are ruthlessly plugged. The modern American agitator shrewdly feeds on these old-fashioned methods. He warms them up for psychotechnical reasons and handles them quite consciously – as a political “human relations expert”. Methods derived from industry and standardized mass

in Critical theory and demagogic populism
Tijana Vujošević

, intending to “create” the modern proletarian out of construction workers, textile workers, and aeroplane mechanics. He also founded three new disciplines that would contribute to this effort: “bioenergetics,” “psychotechnics,” and “social engineering.” Had Gastev not been sent to the Gulag in 1938, the institute would have educated over a million workers. Mass engineerism Gastev’s poetic ideas inspired, in new post-Revolutionary circumstances, not just a technology of organizing production, but also the design of a utopian vision of life and way of production for the

in Modernism and the making of the Soviet New Man
Spanish rhetorics of empire from the 1950s to the 1970s
Andreas Stucki

contradictions within the ‘fraternal’ rhetorics and everyday racism. Racism was pervasive in pseudo-scientific literature and biased the first-hand experiences documented by SF activists in peninsular Spain. Comments in both kinds of texts described the ‘African students’ and their ‘character [as] child-like and hardly mature, like their entire race’. 46 So-called ‘psycho-technical work’ with and assessment of

in Rhetorics of empire
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From orthodox ‘populism studies’ to critical theory
Paul K. Jones

: the integral transformative role for demagogic populism of what Adorno calls the ‘physiognomics’ of modern media – notably ‘time coincidence’ and ‘space ubiquity’ – which render the culture industry pivotal; the related question of cultural populism and of course the social psychological dimensions of modern demagogy which Adorno regards as a form of ‘psychotechnics’. Chapters 2 and 3 provide an account of the Institute's full theorization of ‘modern demagogy’. The reconstruction in this chapter and the following

in Critical theory and demagogic populism
Bogdan Popa

), p. 33 , shows that the Soviet person cannot be understood without the techniques that Soviet scientists deployed to create the communist person. An applied psychology that took the shape of “psychotechnics” describes the transformation of the psyche by transforming the body (Widdis, Socialist Senses , pp. 33

in De-centering queer theory
Machine art and architecture at The Little Review exhibitions
Barnaby Haran

Architects, founded 1923) constructivism in the usa 39 and ‘Work of the Society “OSA”’ (Obedinenie sovremennykh arkhitekturov, Society of Contemporary Architects, founded 1925). ASNOVA was a ‘rationalist’ group that numbered Nicolai Ladovsky, Nicolai Dokucheyev, Melnikov, and briefly, Lissitzky. In 1926 Ladovsky theorized ‘rationalism’ in the group’s one-off publication, Izvestiya Asnova, as a means of engaging the masses and transforming society by examining the scientific basis of architecture through a ‘psychotechnical laboratory’, drawing on the ‘still young

in Watching the red dawn
The mythologies and legacies of mechanised tropical agriculture in French Africa, 1944 – 56
Céline Pessis

, leaving behind disconnected initiatives’. 49 FIDES funding earmarked for general agricultural education was rapidly reallocated for psychotechnical training and for the opening of schools for machine operators and drivers. 50 This focus on machinery demonstrated the limited influence of colonial technicians with rural African populations. 51 Investments in mechanisation sought

in Developing Africa