“Edward Bernays was surely one of the most amazing and influential characters of the twentieth century,” explains John Stauber, co-author of Toxic Sludge is Good for You: Lies, Damn Lies, and Public Relations. “He was a nephew of Sigmund Freud and helped to popularize Freudianism in the U.S. Later, he used his relation to Freud to promote himself. And from his uncle’s psychoanalysis techniques, Bernays developed a scientific method of managing behavior, to which he gave the name ‘public relations’.”
The Vienna-born Bernays was heavily influenced, of course, by his uncle’s work but it was in the service of war that he helped shape what we call “PR” today.
(Occupy this Book: Mickey Z. on Activism can be ordered here.)