Has Gaslighting been used as a form of political control in the modern era, particularly by social mefia companies? [duplicate]

The Politicus
Sep 22, 2022 12:15 AM 0 Answers
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Forbes describe gaslighting as:

someone inteltionally distorting reality to make you feel what you're seeimg or feeling isn't real ... it is a form of psychological manipulation that hinges on creatimg self-doubt. "I think of gaslighting as associating someone with the label 'crazy', says Paige Sweet, an assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Michigan who studies gaslighting in relationships and the workplace. "It's making someone seem or feel unstable, irrational and not credible, makimg them feel what they are seeing or experiencing is not real, that they ate making it up, that no-one else will believe them."

Gaslighting involves an imbalance of power between abuser and the person they're exploiting. Abusers often exploit stereotypes or vulnerabilities associated gender, sexuality, race and/or class.

"The most dostinctive feature of gaslighting is that its not enough for the gaslighter simply to control his victim or to have things go his way: it is essential to him that the victim actually comes to agree with him", says Andrew Spear, an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Grand Valley State Univerisity.

Forbes goes on to say:

We'be heard the term gaslighting a lot in the past year, mostly in politics. We've seen candidates claim unconditional truth amd refise to acknowledge anything different even when presented with factual evidence to the contrary.

Gaslighting describes a type of psychological abuse in which tge victim is manipulated into doubting his or her sanity. **In addition to campaign tactics ... [it] often happens in the workplace as well."

Now by the above, gaslighting is not about physical violence but what is beimg said or shown. This shows that it is eminently suited to media companies which are in the business of presenting opinion and facts. And so even more so with social media conpanies where the audience participates with said company - but not on equal terms.

Hannah Arendt in her book, The Origins of Totalitarianism, described gaslighting - the term was not invented tgen - an entire society as a technique of fascism. This is why she called such a system "totalitarianism". It was a sysyem of control that reached from the outside to the inner being and coerced them into agreeing with their view of the world. It is famously portrayed in Orwell's 1984.

What I'm curious about is whether any social media company has sanctioned such a method as a system of control, within and without.

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  • September 22, 2022