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Television Advertising in Canadian Elections

The Attack Mode, 1993

Walter I. Romanow, Michel de Repentigny, Stanley B. Cunningham, Walter C. Soderlund, and Kai Hildebrandt, editors

Paper 262 pp.

ISBN13: 978-0-88920-323-5

Release Date: June 1999

Online discount: 25%

$42.99  $32.24


Can the strategy of negative political advertising developed in the United States succeed in Canada, or does this kind of advertising do more harm than good?

The year 1988 saw elections in both the United States and Canada. It also saw a turning point in the tenor of television campaign advertising. By the early 1990s there was a growing reliance upon negative political images and symbols.

This book is about that growing reliance. While focusing on the use of “attack” ads, Television Advertising in Canadian Elections provides a historical overview of the growth of negative advertising. It includes a discussion of advertisers’ intentions and strategies, an analysis of the ads played on both English language and French television and their impact and the ethics of political advertising.

This is the first book-length investigation of negative political advertising in Canada. Professional politicians, as well as anyone interested in election politics, journalism, communication studies or advertising, will find this an absorbing study.

Professor Romanow, prior to teaching, followed a career in television broadcasting. Professors de Repentigny, Cunningham, Soderlund and Hildebrandt teach in university departments dedicated to the study of mass media and communication.


“[T]his volume makes an important contribution, both in terms of theory and practice, to understanding the permanent part that TV plays in modern elections.”

— James Gillies, Literary Review of Canada