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Riccardo Brizzi

« Ne fais pas de bruit avec ta soupe, laisse-moi entendre ce que dit le député Reale ». Les premiers pas de la politique italienne à la télévision

Le Temps des médias n°7, hiver 2006-07, p.64-77

The first series of the “Electoral Tribune” on Italian TV, in 1960, marked the infancy of Italian politicians’ relationship with televison ; TV programs in Italy began in January 1954 ; but before 1960, political parties had never been allowed to have direct access to the small screen ; the press highlighted how politicians themselves were among the first to discover the new skills that were required. Previously politicians used their rhetorical skills in very different contexts ; adressing public meetings, Parliament, party congresses. They realised that televison represented an entirely different venue. All of them realised that by fine-tuning their television skills, they could acquire a new form of legitimacy and political capital. While they saw the potential, hardly anyone understood what communication techniques were involved.

While their first on-screen performances varied considerably, all politicians realised immediately the impact of TV on political communications. The persuasive power of an image lay not in the truth of any given argument but in the style with which it was represented.

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