Persuasion, Manipulation, and Seduction as Related to Human Communication

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Johnson 1

Persuasion, Manipulation, and Seduction as Related to Human Communication By: Sharon Johnson
COM 323: Persuasion & Argumentation
Instructor: Arthur Piervincenti
January 29, 2012

Johnson 2 Since the beginning of the human race, human have use some sort of influence to get other to do what they want them to do. The earliest example of this can be seen in the Garden of Eden, where Adam was influenced to eat from the forbidden fruit. For the purpose of this paper we will attempt to compare the effect of persuasion, manipulation, and seduction as it relates to human communication. Much of human communication involves attempts to influence. It is done verbally and non-verbally, consciously and unconsciously, honestly and deceitfully. Some people may be swayed with reason and logic or by emotions and character. There is no doubt that the power to persuade is a coveted tool for anyone regardless of how they wish to use it. However, beyond simple persuasion are other acts of influence that are just as powerful. The terms persuasion, manipulation, and seduction are sometimes used interchangeable when describing influential behavior (Newell, 2010). Persuasion is the act of influencing others, who are conscious of the intent, through communication. That is they are conscious that attempted influencing is taking place. Also it is under the assumed umbrella of free will meaning that there is no form of duress or outside pressure involved that would force influence. While persuasion is an act that takes place between at least two conscious parties, manipulation happens when the side being influenced is not aware of it. That is a human is programmed over time to...
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