How Freud made you smoke and eat bacon!
Have you ever heard of Edmund L Bernays? I am going to give you a hint. He was the nephew of Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalisys. His nephew on the other hand, had nothing in common with his uncle and when he had, all was more or less americanized, as he found a way to cash in on all of his uncles theories.
So, who was Edmund L Bernays? Beside the fact that he was Freuds nephew,there was more to him than philosophy and psychoanalisys. I can tell you for sure that much like his uncle, he became a father as well. He became the father of public relations and was voted one of the most influential people of the 20th century. As you might expect, or not hehe, he was an immigrant born in Vienna in 1891, he grew up in New York. You might have heard of his work. I, for one, can mention “Crystallizing Public Opinions” in 1923 and “Propaganda” in 1928. These works came to define the very meaning of public relations. The man had a point! He was a smart guy and I know some of you might judge him, given the fact that he described the masses as irrational, he saw them like a heard of animals. Like sheep, for example, the masses are subjected to a heard instinct. And he was right, given his success! I will go one step forward and give you an example of Apples success in todays society! It was all Bernays fault! Have you ever seen those lines outside Apple stores, when a new phone comes out?
Yeah! My point exactly! Heard instinct! So hate him as much as you feel like, but the man had a point!
His breakthrough campaign, was one that would define society in so many ways. It was called “Tourches of freedom”. Hehe sounds grand right? It was grand! But those torches refered only to one major thing. Cigarettes. Yes Cigarettes. Back then, our buddy Edmund, struck a deal with American Tobbaco. Their main issue was to find a way to make women smoke, as back then, the only people that smoked where men. Yes only men smoked! Well, smart as he was, Edmund went back to his roots and by that I mean Freudian roots. In the 1920 there were few women that smoked.. so the big tobacco companies had a major flaw in the public..marketing wise. Our buddy Edmund, I will refer to him as Edy for now on, came up with a brilliant idea! An idea, that will be used for centuries! Edy, as we so dearly call him know, had the idea of consulting a psychoanalyst A.A. Brille, a Freud disciple, to help his public relation campaign. And he did just that! As he knew that cigarettes were a symbol of male power, there was only one thing, psychological, that could change that! Challenging male power, through smoking!
Yes a woman smoking would challenge male power! Tourches of freedom were cigarettes! You might laugh now, but our buddy Edy was the grandfather of all that is called now commercial! The parade debuted on April 1st, 1929, and Edy procured a list of debutants, models now a days, and pushed the idea that smoking a cigarette could in some way contribute to women’s right! In fact women’s rights were in no way enhanced by smoking, but he was on the money! And boy, was he on the money!! Psychological speaking, our boy nailed it! Women started smoking more then a steem locomotive!! Hey! I still smoke! Maybe not because of Edy, but sure as hell he got something to do with it, at least psychological speaking! Hehe..Our boy understood one important issue in all his psychological quests. He understood that linking products to emotions, would cause people to behave irrationally! And that he did! Women started smoking, on 5th Avenue just to prove men did not have all the power!!
Can you imagine a Bernays, living somewhere on a 25th floor or more, of a sky rise, looking on the masses that did, no more, no less, as they were intended too. All sheep, in the hands of the perfect puppeteer!
I am a smoker and I will acknowledge the meaning of smoking. I understand Edy and his strategy and frankly he had discovered a new way in approaching the masses..one that has never used before..Freuds psychoanalisys. Yes I thought of showing you a picture of Freud also, as he had, unknowingly, a very important role in his nephews ascent in society.
Edmund L Bernays went on to lead the most successful campaigns in american history. Counting as one of his important ones, he went on to consult a physician( a medical trained person=doctor) and came up with the strategy that a hearty meal for breakfast was better then a light meal! That’s when bacon stepped in! Yes! He was employed by Beechnut Packing Company, who was suffering lagging sales in one of its key meat products: bacon. And he did just that, as he increased not only the sales of bacon in that period of time, but bacon, thanks to him became a beacon of american society around breakfast time!
My point, as you the ones that follow me know that I do try to have a point, is this..question more! Ask yourself! Why am I doing certain things that society predicts as normal? Why is this, or that, an acceptable situation? Ask and learn! This is the only way to gain knowledge! Yes, I know why I smoke and why I eat bacon!
Freud, the moment he came to understand the draconian ways in which his psychoanalysis was used..well let’s say he was more then not impressed. But at the same time, when faced with financial ruin, he accepted, I am sure forced by circumstances, his nephews offer to publish his work in America..he was compensated for his work. Now, I know that Freud was the father of all things psychoanalysis and although he for material reasons had to publish his work in America, he never did anything more that that; although offered to write for some of the biggest magazine names, he refused. His nephew, on the other hand, went on to become the biggest name in public relations. He was the father of commercials! The reason that we accept some things as smoking and eating bacon for breakfast is because of him! Why? Because he used us as guinea pigs! Our psychological understanding was more then enough for him to sell his product! Yes we are all a heard! Sheep lead on by whatever we are told!
Now, ask yourself this one thing..if our buddy Edy, managed to do that, in the 1920s, what are they able to make us do now?! Ask yourself.. when you are buying that bag of chips or that smartphone you had to have, why am I doing this?? Ask yourself and question more!!
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