Chomsky’s “Media Control”: Rhetorical Analysis

Chomsky’s Media Control is an exercise in propaganda: how the media successfully runs away from the public to make them believe everything they print or write. The author looks at different concepts and points of view, sets a calm and argumentative tone to his work, and divides it into logical parts. The extent to which Chomsky’s assertion gives the furthest areas of communication is excellent and far-reaching, that modern media use propaganda components such as yellow journalism and agenda-setting. It speaks to the distorted nature of the purveyors of information and how they twist the truth to suit impure motives.

A resource as powerful as the media cannot be left unused for social management purposes. The author examines various cases from history and, after each one, provides an effective argumentation. According to Chomsky, in the US, a social relations industry was born with the primary objective of manipulating and controlling public consciousness. In terms of the propaganda model, the media are seen as businesses selling a commodity – readers and audiences – to other companies. The theory postulates the existence of filters that determine the content of the material. Thus, the conclusions from what one reads or sees are pre-determined for the individual, and the message is foregone. All these thoughts are interesting to read, easy to understand, and a reasonable basis for further reflection.

Chomsky made a significant contribution to the development of psychology, polemicizing. However, he proved his beliefs using the same language of scientific linguistics. The author convincingly communicates the purpose of his work to the audience. In wishing to change public opinion in a favorable direction, the manipulator is faced with a situation of choice in which he has specific information. This information must be conveyed to the public but perceived or understood in the right way. The point is not to diversify the vocabulary of the audience but that different concepts carry different meanings. By calling things by other names, the media is engaging in semantic or meaningful manipulation. At the same time, there are many sources of information and news in the modern world: one should not limit oneself to one basis. It is necessary to study different materials, to ask oneself who is behind the writing of a particular article to avoid propaganda. By analyzing various sources, one can get closer to moving away from the subjective to the objective.


Chomsky, Noam. Media control: The spectacular achievements of propaganda. Vol. 7. Seven Stories Press, 2002.

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