The Influencing Machine

Posted on December 9, 2011. Filed under: Nonfiction | Tags: |

book cover for Influencing MachineThe Influencing Machine:  Brooke Gladstone on the Media
Written by Brooke Gladstone
Illustrated by Josh Neufeld

Brooke Gladstone is an intrepid reporter, and the cohost and managing editor of the radio show “On the Media.”  The Influencing Machine is a comic book about the history of the media, and so much more.

Gladstone draws her title from psychology, and the first recorded case of a patient claiming that she, and everyone around her, were being controlled by an unseen machine.  As the patient’s treatment progressed, the so-called “influencing machine” could not be separated from the patient’s own identity.  Says Gladstone, so it is with the media, our politics, our world view, and ourselves.

Yes, the media controls us.  But we control it too.  She traces this dance from its beginnings in ancient Rome up to the present day, melding history, science, philosophy, and pop culture to produce a book that covers all the contradictions and complexity of our relationship with the news, with so-called facts, with ourselves, and with each other. And it’s fun – enjoy!

-posted by Jamie Bourne

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