Critical Questions in Persuasion Research

(First Edition)
Franklin J. Boster and Christopher J. Carpenter
©2021, 276 pages

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Critical Questions in Persuasion Research

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Summary
    Critical Questions in Persuasion Research presents students with a refreshing way to study persuasion, communication theory, and human behavior. Rather than examining different types of persuasion research and reviewing each one at a time, communication scholars Franklin J. Boster and Christopher J. Carpenter explore eight key controversies, as well as research and theory related to each topic:

    - What constitutes a strong persuasive message, and does it matter?
    - How do we adapt persuasive messages to diverse audiences?
    - Do persuasive messages have side effects?
    - How can we manage the buzz?
    - How can we maintain attitude change?
    - Can a persuasive message be counterproductive?
    - How can we encourage resistance to persuasion?
    - To what extent does action follow from attitudes?

    By focusing on how various disciplines deal with the big controversies in the persuasion process, students gain an understanding not only of key ideas and theories, but how the ideas and theories fit together in a meaningful whole. By framing persuasion as a series of critical questions, students learn that social science is a dynamic and exciting way in which to study persuasion.

    Critical Questions in Persuasion Research is an ideal textbook for courses with focus on persuasion, communication, and human behavior.

    Franklin J. Boster (Ph.D., Michigan State University) is an internationally recognized expert among scholars and researchers of social influence, persuasion, and communication research. He is professor emeritus in the Department of Communication at Michigan State University.
    Christopher J. Carpenter (Ph.D., Michigan State University) is an associate professor in the Department of Communication at Western Illinois University. He has produced more than 60 journal articles, book chapters, and published conference proceedings in Human Communication Research, Journal of Communication, and Health Communication, among others.
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    "The Boster and Carpenter approach is very unique in that they have chosen topics and organized them in such a way that it walks the reader through the natural progression of a persuasive attempt addressing important issues along the way ... The organization and integrative approach to presenting/teaching persuasion is fantastic and a vast improvement on other persuasion textbooks ... This text presents persuasion in an entirely refreshing and new way that I think will be very attractive to students."
    Michael R. Kotowski, Associate Professor, School of Communication Studies, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

    "The premise of the book is clever. I appreciate that the theory is clearly central to the book. What is novel is that the authors deliver theory in the context of a broader organizing framework that will make is easy for students to see connections. Rather than a laundry list of theories, students get a sense of the broader questions that theories address and how individual theories fit together in a broader framework. This is a clear strength and distinguishing feature of this text ... This text has very good potential to help students have a more meaningful and informative experience in a persuasion course."
    Stephen Rains, Professor of Communication, University of Arizona

    "In addition to the organization around central questions, a strength of the chapters is their adherence to actual studies and the treatment of central questions as open, rather than closed debates. This is a good textbook for faculty interest in connecting theoretical conclusions more closely to the evidence. In addition, the authors have well contextualized the communicative study of persuasion in other (non-communication) perspectives."
    Ryan Goei, Direct of University Honors, Associate Professor of Communication, University of Minnesota Duluth