‘Encouraging Transformation Through Nostalgia in British General Election Posters and other Printed Campaign Texts’

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


    The 2010 and 2015 General Elections saw the major political parties keen to harness the capabilities of Internet marketing. However, despite this digitisation of publicity, there was a revival of drawing styles typical of the early and mid-twentieth century. For example, the 2010 General Election witnessed the Conservative Party released a series of hand-drawn posters, including the “PEOPLE POWER” poster and a manifesto featuring images, which evoked political posters from the 1940s and 1950s. Likewise, the Labour Party’s 2010 manifesto cover was reminiscent of early twentieth century socialist propaganda posters. For the 2015 General Election Labour raised money by selling two limited edition hand-drawn posters bearing the headlines “VOTE FOR OUR NHS” and “WE’RE VOTING LABOUR”. Labour’s hand-drawn posters recall the visual rhetoric of twentieth century trade union banners. This retrospection is typical of the postmodern society in which we live; a society locked into a period of “hyper-stasis”, whereby popular culture seems preoccupied with nostalgia and the recycling styles from the past. Societies retreat into nostalgia in search of more optimistic historic episodes during moments of pessimism and decline. Therefore, this paper will not only consider how political advertising and other printed political campaign texts visually retreated into the past, due to the recent economic recession, but how nostalgia was employed to persuade the British electorate that a better future lay ahead. Thus, this paper will discuss how nostalgia has been used as a persuasion device in political campaigning.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2015
    EventPolitical Studies Association's annual Media and Politics conference: Mediating Democracy - University of Chester, Chester, United Kingdom
    Duration: 5 Nov 20156 Feb 2019


    ConferencePolitical Studies Association's annual Media and Politics conference
    Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
    Internet address


    • Nostalgia
    • political publicity
    • 2010 General Election
    • 2015 General Election


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