This chapter reviews the vast and sprawling literature that seeeks to illuminate and explain the effects of mass communication on American public opinion. Klapper's famous verdict of “minimal effects,” delivered some 40 years ago on this subject, was faithful to the evidence available to him at the time, but now seems quite mistaken. With sharp improvements in design, measurement, and analysis, and with keener understanding of human information processing, minimal effects have given way to an entire family of real effects: agenda-setting, priming, framing, and even, looking in the right places, persuasion.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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