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Framing: How Language Manipulates Political Thought

April 11, 2007
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

The Sweet House
254 E. Fulton
Grand Rapids, MI 49503 United States

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Organized by:
Jeff Seaver
Phone: (616) 892-9300
Email: jeff@cfimichigan.org


Professor Wolfe’s speech will focus on some of the basic ways in which language can get us to think about issues from different perspectives. There are many cases in which changing a couple of words in a policy description can dramatically influence peoples’ opinions and decisions about those policies. The presentation will begin with a description of what framing is and how it works psychologically. Some specific topics will also be discussed, including the importance of metaphorical language, reasoning about an issue within and outside of a frame, why negating a frame is typically unsuccessful, and how to create or change frames. Several recent political examples will illustrate these points. The talk will conclude with some practical advice about how to use framing to discuss issues from a perspective that is favorable to your position (which, by the way, is not the same as lying.)

After the meeting, join us at Vitale’s Restaurant, 834 Leonard NE, Grand Rapids, MI to socialize. View Map

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About Michael Wolfe, Ph.D

Professor of Psychology, Grand Valley State University

Dr. Michael Wolfe is professor of psychology at Grand Valley State University and incoming chair of the Psychology Department. Dr. Wolfe received his PhD in cognitive psychology from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Much of his research involves studies on reading comprehension and memory. In recent years, he has studied how and when beliefs may change as a result of reading, and the extent to which people are aware of these changes. He is past Secretary of the Society for Text and Discourse, and a current Governing Board member. He also serves on the editorial board of the journal Discourse Processes.