A Boomerang in a Peace Corps Attempt at Persuasion.

by George A. Comstock


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A study of Peace Corps effectiveness at persuasion in regard to their educational television (ETV) project in Colombia. The experiment described involves a boomerang of the indirect sort attributable to what is interpreted as defense arousal. The situation involved an attempt to gain compliance from the teachers regarding changes in teaching practices. The conceptualization permitted the matching of appeals commonly used by the Peace Corps against a set hypothesized to be superior. The results suggest that the most obvious approach to gaining compliance may not always be the best, and that verbal enthusiasm, although gratifying to the persuader, may often arouse erection of defenses that actually defeat the purposes of the persuasion. 24 pp. Ref.

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